Dallas is a great place to be in the summer! There are a multitude of events that go on throughout the city, and it is the perfect home base for Texas travel. But, with an active work and social calendar, comes the obstacle of finding the balance to not neglect one or the other.
When I moved back to Dallas from a country where everyone's favorite word was "mañana" and the culture was “work to live" and not "live to work," it took some effort to find a good balance. Although everyone finds balance in different ways, these are all tips that have helped me adjust back into a fast-paced environment where I could still be true to my work/life/travel lifestyle.
1. Know What is Important To You- Finding balance doesn’t always mean that everything has to be given equal attention. Depending on where you are in your life; work, play, or travel may take precedence. But, by establishing how much time you would like each to be a part of your life, you can balance more effectively.
2. Choose 2 or 3 Nights a Week to Have “You” Time - Perhaps you haven’t thought too much about what is important to you to help you find that balance. If this is the case, spending some time with you is the perfect place to start. Some people run, cycle, do yoga, play the guitar, the list of things to do is endless. Self reflection can be done various ways. Dallas offers some great outdoor options with beautiful scenery. You can do some running around White Rock Lake, bike trails with a Dallas cyclist group, or join the Cosmic Cafe Group for some Dynamic Meditation or Laughing Yoga.
3. Set Parameters- We all fall into the trap of forgetting how to say no. It really is impossible to be in numerous places at one time. Moreover, if you overwhelm yourself constantly with more than you can handle, almost 100% of the time, your social life and travel are what gets pushed to the wayside.
4. Find a Hobby to Help You Play - Some people often times feel guilty if they spend too much time “playing,” but playing can help you learn new skills. Play can also be productive. Hobbies allow you to interact with others, learn, and develop as a person. Have you always wanted to learn to be artsy? Try a class at The Make Site in The Bishop Arts District. You could also bring out the Picasso in you and learn to paint at Painting With A Twist. Want to practice moving your hips to the grooves or learn another language? Check out various Dallas groups on Meet-up.
5. Keep Commitments on Your Social Calendar - This can be difficult. Many working professionals are always having to adjust and constantly move things around so we tend do this with our social life as well. We let last minute “priorities” take control of us. Make it a point to not cancel your personal and travel time unless it is a true emergency. There will always be work, always be something you feel you have to get done immediately, and always be people that make you feel something is more important. But, I will let you in on a little secret......it will always be there tomorrow. I tried it once, and to my surprise the world didn’t come to an end.
6. Don’t Underestimate the Power of Short Road Trips- It’s wonderful to be in Dallas, and want to explore the great State of Texas. Only 3 hours to Austin, 4 hours to San Antonio or you can even take a weekend trip down to South Texas for some sun and surf. There are also tons of great cities of all sizes throughout the state that are well worth a Texas Road Trip.
7. Plan Trips in Advance and Place Them on Your Calendar- By making plans in advance, and placing them on your calendar you are more likely to plan around them. Just remember to stick to tip number 5, and don’t cancel at the last minute. Planning travel doesn’t always mean that it has to be to a far off exotic destination or long trips.
A Texas native and travel addict, Alisha Robertson is a 20-something professional, lover of pineapples, and wanderer. Since returning back to Dallas after a year working and traveling in South America she has been mastering the art of how you can find balance and not always follow conformity. Alisha has launched SmallWorldPursuits, an educational blog about broadening horizons, traveling abroad, volunteering, and connecting with cultures from around the world. You can often find her anywhere near the water or salsa dancing. To see where she is venturing, you can follow her on Twitter or friend her on Facebook.