Are you always trying to balance your work, personal and social life? What is this “work-life balance” anyway? Is it actually helping you? Are you feeling the pressure of succeeding as an entrepreneur, an employee, a leader, or being a good partner, mom, daughter, friend?
I’ve been feeling the pinch lately. I’ve started noticing when it is that I feel “off”. And what I’ve noticed is something really interesting.
It doesn’t generally have anything to do with how busy I am. I could be “working” a 12-hour day writing, meeting collaborators, talking biz with entrepreneurs, and I would feel totally energized at 9 p.m. that night. On the flip side, I could have a day when I have more “free time”, and yet feel oddly stressed and dissatisfied. For me, it’s not always about the demands on my time, but rather, what I’m spending my time and energy doing – which makes me believe, at least for me – overall well-being isn’t about “work-balance” at all. Rather, it’s about getting really clear on choosing to do the things that bring me the most satisfaction, make me feel good about myself. That also means getting super clear about your priorities, and once you know what they are, be good with them!
Do not second guess, guilt yourself, or fret about what you “should” want and do. The hard truth is, no success or excellence comes without sacrifice. Sally Krawchek (@ellevest), Elon Musk and @jeffbezos will attest to that. Krawcheck actually said she is so “over” work-life balance.
I love my family, and they will always come first when they need me, 100%. But does that mean they are always the no. 1 priority? No. Will I cut an important meeting short because my partner may have to wait 30 mins to have dinner with me? No. But if he calls to tell me he had a car accident, I’m there pronto. And if being in that meeting means missing a yoga class, so be it. But the most important thing is to not to let missing that yoga class make me feel like I’m “off-balance”, because I’m not. I just chose to spend my energy on something that brings me great satisfaction. And that’s a balance worth seeking.