I am finally back here at Gents of Lancaster after a long hiatus. Life became a little crazy and between school starting, friends weddings, performing pretty much every weekend with my band and rounding out one year of marriage, I lost track of how little I posted here. Special shout out to Chris who kept things moving on our site! I thought for a long time this week about what I wanted to write about and I think the most pressing topic that came to mind is balance.
This is not really meant to be a suggestion but rather a discussion on how you find balance in your daily life. There are so many aspects of life to balance that it can quickly become overwhelming. There are bills, events, work, relationships, friends, family, hobbies, news and chores just to mention a few. It is no secret to those who know me that I am a busy person. The number one question I get asked when I am out with people is when do I sleep? The answer as you might have guessed is not often! So today I want to open up my world to you a little and see how others deal with finding balance in their everyday life.
No rest for the weary:
I have found that I am actually most productive in the morning so I usually get up very early to have some quiet time at home. What I do in the morning depends on what I have to get done that day. I usually have coffee and watch the news or catch up on emails to make sure I am set for the day. By having this time at the beginning of the day I get my head in the right place and feel ready to take on whatever comes my way. I also get to spend time with my wife before she leaves for work which I look forward to every day.
Work hard; play hard:
I have two professions; teaching and performing. Much like any job, teaching is a full time commitment with concerts to plan, lessons to teach, and students to reach. That being said, I absolutely need to fill my musical soul as well as my passion for teaching. Balancing teaching and performing actually go hand in hand. If I get better as a performer, I can pass that experience on to my students. I do love getting to perform in my band and although the hours are usually late and long, I (and my wife) constantly remind myself that I am lucky to get paid to do something I love and with some of the best musicians and friends in the PA area.
Hobby or job?
Playing trumpet for a long time was a hobby for me. I played it because I enjoyed getting to be part of something bigger and I enjoyed exploring different musical styles with friends. Somewhere in the middle of the journey that is playing trumpet, it turned into a job. One of my goals for finding balance was to make playing trumpet feel like a hobby again so I set a new goal to learn how to play jazz.
Every morning after having my coffee I set time aside to learn one new jazz standard on trumpet. Jazz is always a style that has evaded my abilities and taking that time every morning to learn a new skill set not only has improved my abilities as a professional trumpeter but also fulfilled my desire to keep trumpet a hobby.
There’s no place like home:
My wife and I just celebrated one year of marriage and in that time we have created a pretty amazing household. Having that comforting place to come home to after a long day at work or a late night gig is priceless. Of course that home would be nothing without my wife. The true secret to balance for me is my wife who constantly keeps me thinking forward and helps me to deal with all aspects of my life. We also make time when we both get home from work to have dinner together and either go for a walk or watch a movie together.
Let the good times roll:
Getting to enjoy the events of life also keeps things balanced in my life. Getting to be involved in my buddy Joc’s wedding in October was an absolute blast and a chance to hang out with friends and celebrate their new adventure together. Speaking of new adventures, shout out to Chris and his wife, as we just celebrated their baby shower last weekend! My wife and I cannot wait to be the cool Aunt and Uncle!
One thing that I am very thankful for is the time spent with family. Getting to see both my parents and now my in-laws every month is another bedrock of balance in my life. Time spent with them is invaluable and their constant support and belief in our goals helps us to keep life balanced.
So I am back, and trying to find balance in posting more for Gents of Lancaster. I also believe that there are many ways to find balance in life. What works for you? What challenges have you faced trying to find balance? How have you overcome obstacles in your way? I am happy to be back and writing here again and I hope you can find balance in your everyday life.