How I struggle with the work-life balance concept
Writing this article brings a sense of vulnerability to me, making me feel a bit uneasy. The good news is that it means am human after all. I also try not to use this blog just as a podium for personal reflection, but rather to share personal and professional experiences that might be of help for likeminded professionals within my community, and in this case it’s the work life balance dilemma.
A good friend of mine, who also happened to be an amazing business coach, called me out on my borderline chronic approach to work. She’s thankfully pointed out how I sometimes loose sight of what’s important in life, which is myself.
Some or many of you reading this article might relate to these personality characteristics. You are a taskmaster, like a dog with a bone. You finish one task just to start another. You find yourself a bit anxious if you don’t have something to achieve at a given day. Like myself, you’ve got your weekly tasks written down so you can burn through them and burn out in the process, with little or no regard for the work life balance concept.
Being a small business owner often requires you to be ahead of the curve, top of your game, just an all round ace. Who else is going to take care of your business right? Who’s going to pay the bills, or bring in new clients? They are all valid questions, and a bit of a dilemma to be honest. Sometimes it feels like it’s a do or die kind of situation.
The bad news is, it’s just the way it is. Becoming a business owner or a high flying professional means you chose a life that’s demanding, and you’re constantly required to put in more if you want more out of it.
The good news is you get to decide when enough is enough. As I’ve explained to my good friend Amy Crawford, I actually do make an effort to strike that ever-elusive work-life balance everyone wants.
If you’re like myself have your daily schedule packed with tasks to be performed, maybe the following approach that helps me could help you as well:
Your vibe attracts your tribe
Being anxious, tired and stressed out is going to suck the energy right out of you. Your energy vibrates throughout your body, and people pick on it without you having to utter a single word.
So the vibe you put out there, negative or positive, will attract the same energy. So like you schedule everything else in your diary, schedule some down time. Maybe a quick walk or gym session, or a 10-minute meditation session which will do wonders. I actually have alarms telling me it’s time to practice my golf swing, or play a bit of piano.
When you balance your inner energy, it will show. It will also reflect positively on your relationships with your partner, friends and clients. Most importantly it will attract similar positive energy from your surroundings.
Pick your battles
Many of us waste our time on activities or people that add no value — for example, spending too much time at work with a colleague who is constantly venting and gossiping, or loosing ourselves checking our bank accounts or social media latest baby pictures from someone you’ve met once.
Substitute some of that energy draining behaviour with some quite time for yourself. Just do nothing for 10 minutes.
Help someone for zero return
Am not sure if I really need to elaborate on this, but I will anyways for the sake of word count. Other than being emotionally rewarding, it’s been scientifically proven that helping someone for no return; results in our brain releasing a good dose of the good old Dopamine hormone into our system.
It’s the same hormone released when mothers nurse their babies, when you take drugs or make love to someone. It gets you on a natural high making you happy and feeling good. Which in turn balances your energy and relaxes you. How good is that.
There are so many small things we can do to help ourselves, but the above is my top three that I try to incorporate into my daily routine. I’d love to hear from you if you’ve got some tips and tricks that would help me and everyone else reading this article.
I hope this sheds some light on what’s important in your life, you.