Today I wanted to talk a little about the idea of tilting – an alternative to seeking balance. It’s a topic that has been on my mind a lot lately, particularly as I head into a very busy period at work. Adopting it is helping me stay focused on slowing down and simplifying at a time where it otherwise would feel impossible!
So, what is tilting?
Tilting is something I first heard about on the Slow Home podcast, and it was also covered in Brooke’s first book – Destination Simple. The key idea is that instead of seeking balance in every element of your life at all times, you tilt towards whatever needs your attention most at the time. This means that you don’t have to try and find that magic, usually non-existent sweet spot between your work, life, friends, health, interests etc, but instead know that you can focus on each of them as required. It still requires you to be intentional in choosing which direction you tilt and when, but it allows flexibility to meet the changing focuses and pressures of our lives.
How does this help us slow down?
The whole idea of slowing down and simplifying is to help remove stress and overwhelm from our lives. For lots of people that overwhelm can come from feeling pressured to be on top of all the things, all the time – that magic balance again. By recognising that that is unachievable, and instead focusing our energy into whatever needs it most at the time actually allows us to live more intentionally. By choosing to tilt towards whatever we see as most important at the time we are also choosing to tilt away from other things, which can feel strange to begin with, but so worthwhile.
Doesn’t this just mean working more?
On the surface it definitely can look like the end result would be giving up on work-life balance, and instead tumbling headfirst into just working. If we’re not careful that can definitely happen, but choosing to focus on tilting should result in more balance over time. Instead of trying to balance everything every day, tilting allows us to find that balance over a series of weeks and months. Sometimes work may have to take priority, but if we’re intentional about it we can balance that out over time. Ask yourself at regular intervals whether you’re feeling generally balanced, and if not, be aware of that over the coming weeks and months. I’m not saying it’s easy, but it’s definitely do-able!
How am I tilting at the moment?
The reason that tilting has been so front of mind for me lately is because I’m heading in to a very busy period at work. I can’t avoid it, it might not be ideal, but it will have an end date. So, I’m choosing to tilt fully in to that and recognising that they will mean less time for other things. I’ve stocked my freezer so I can still eat healthy meals, and I’ll be very intentional about the social engagements I say yes to. The down time I do get over the coming months I will use to tilt fully in to self-care and recharging my batteries. That might mean I don’t post quite as often here over the next few months, but we shall see how I go!