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Juggling Our Roles: What Balls Can You Drop?

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Deep thoughts can come in the form of text messages.

“It’s always a battle to juggle all the different roles that we play. Worker, Friend, Partner, Daughter, etc… It never gets any easier, you just get better at handling it.”

-Meghan’s Long-Lost Friend

Look at your life; really examine the roles that make you most happy. A daily gratitude list can help you with that exercise! The roles are your metaphorical juggling balls.

Now think about the stuff you have to do that doesn’t bring you happiness on a daily basis. You have balls for those things, too.

Where in this happiness juggling act do we belong?

We belong in the middle, holding each thing momentarily before we throw it back into the air. Controlled chaos. Sometimes it’s the most wonderful controlled chaos we’ve ever experience when we hold two great things simultaneous.

But remember that the not-so-happy stuff will come back down. And then you have a choice:

  • Can you let it drop?
  • Can you hold on to it?

Your juggling act could go on if you let the unhappy stuff drop. One less role would then be up in the air. The negative side of dropping unhappy roles includes letting down people who count on you to keep juggling for them.

If you hold on to your unhappy juggling ball then you have chosen to manage the rest of your metaphorical balls with the other hand. Your time becomes split. Your concentration has to rise to meet the demand of your juggling act. Others will applaud your skill.

But then… What happens when you can’t hold on any longer? Your arm becomes tired! Maybe if you try to hold more than one role in each hand at a time? All the balls drop are eventually going to drop. Your juggling act ends.

So practice. Practice juggling. With time, your skills will improve. You will realize what you can drop and when you can drop it. You will learn to become prepared for the moment a new role, another metaphorical ball, gets added to your juggling act.

We all have to juggle. That’s life. It never gets any easier, you just get better at handling it.

What juggling balls do you have in the air right now? What roles can you drop on purpose to make life’s juggle more manageable? Is my friend right with the statement “you just get better at handling it?”

I’d love it if you’d comment below with your thoughts!