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The Art of Balancing Life and Work

The Art of Balancing Life and Work

I often find myself in conversation with others about creating work:life balance.  What does work:life balance mean to you?  How do you juggle all that presents itself in the realm of your day-to-day living?

Perhaps it is time that we start thinking about work:life balance in a different way.  After all, it’s all life!  How do you intertwine passions, responsibilities and personal joy?  The answer to this is different for every person!  And the balance equation changes as life progresses – never remaining static or the same at any time in our lives.

Recently, I led a Balance Workshop for a women’s leadership group in a Denver corporation.  The women explored what created balance in their lives – and recalled times in their lives when they felt most in balance.  They shared their stories with each other, and in the process, came up with their own guiding principles that were essential to creating balance in their lives:

  1. Acknowledge your successes! Engaging your brain, planning, doing things you’re really good at – and have a deep appreciation of your accomplishments
  2. Partnership with others – at home and work. Ask for help when you need it!
  3. Passion in the work you do. Having passion about your work and understanding what moves you.  Understanding yourself at a deep level – who you are at your very essence, and creating an environment where your essence can shine!
  4. Taking time for the things that you value: date nights, your children, faith / spirituality.
  5. A strong sense of community. This can be in your work or your community or your volunteer efforts.  Finding shared interests with others – and in supporting each.
  6. Learning to say no! Getting rid of the things in your life that no longer serve you.

While these principles aligned at the big picture level, every woman’s definition of balance was very different – dependent on who she was at her core – each balancing different priorities, values and passions.  But the mere question of exploring their own life paths brought new insights and new approaches to shifting the balance equation in their lives.

What they discovered was that when we are passionate about the things we do in our life, the ebb and flow of how we spend our time seems to balance effortlessly.  We move from one role to another at a steady, yet energetic pace, with productivity, peace of mind and a deep sense of accomplishment.

Are you ready to explore your own work:life balance principles?  Here’s an exercise in the art of creating balance in your world.  Find a friend to do this with, or just take some quiet contemplative time to explore on your own!

Recall a time in your life when you felt a sense of equilibrium.  A time when you felt alignment to those around you:  your family, your work, and most importantly, yourself.  A time when you felt healthy, vibrant, mentally stimulated and on fire with a strong sense of purpose.  Tell a friend or write the story about this time in your life.  What were you doing?  Who was involved?  What contributed to this sense of balance?

As you tell the story, look into the situation a little more deeply.

  • How did your passions and values align to the world around you?  What was it about you that contributed to the successful balancing act you created at this time – what personal strengths and gifts did you tap into?
  • How were you making a difference in the lives of others?  How were others making a difference in your life?  What partnerships – be it with your work, your family, your friends made this time effective?
  • How were you taking care of YOU at this time?  How did you feel?  Consider your whole self – mind, body, emotion, spirit.  What were the self-care factors that contributed to this sense of balance?

After you’ve explored your own stories, consider what principles were key to creating balance for your life.  What could you shift today?  What one small step could you take to put yourself onto a path of balance?

Interested in exploring your life path further?

  • Sign up for my FREE 2-Part Your Best Year Ever Teleseminar class on July 25 and August 1.  You will discover the keys to setting and achieving the goals you really want in your life. Register
  • If you’re a professional woman thinking about your next chapter, I invite you to take the You Version 2.0 – Discovering your Next Chapter 15 minute online survey.  As a participant, you’ll receive a copy of the final report – which will share what other successful women are thinking about when it comes to “what’s next in their lives!”
  • And as always, I offer a limited number of Complimentary One-on-One Consultations each month.  Schedule your own powerful, thought-provoking Consultation online today!

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