Work-life balance is a poor goal.
When you seek work-life balance, you’re essentially saying that you want all of your priorities to be a priority and then nothing is really a priority.
When you consider your work, your marriage, your kids, and your life, every single one of those things takes a different amount of time, a different level of focus, and a different piece of your life.
If you’re trying to balance everything, you end up feeling guilty all the time because you always feel like instead of what you’re focused on in the moment, you should be focusing on something else.
You feel guilty about not parenting when you’re working, or you feel guilty about your business not doing well when you should be focusing on your kids.
Your life is made up of seasons and seeking balance dishonors those seasons.
There are seasons of your life where your family needs more of your focus and there are seasons of your life where your business needs more of your focus.
If you’re just focusing on trying to create balance, you’ll always be focusing on what is out of balance and you’ll never be focusing on or be present for the priorities that matter to you.
If you’re craving balance, you’ll always be evaluating and comparing how much time you’re spending on everything in your life and that in turn causes you to feel less present in the area that you’re focused on, which in turn makes you feel guilty for spending time in that moment where you are and not on something else.
This guilt creates a deep sense of being out of alignment.
Instead of seeking balance, you should change your intentions so that you are seeking and prioritizing harmony.
Harmony is based on your intentions in the moment.
Aiming for balance is a vicious downward cycle where you miss out on the moments that you should be present for and it makes you feel guilty.
Then when you get to whatever is on your to-do list, now you feel stressed and guilty about the moments you missed.
If instead, you set your intentions for the moment that you will be fully present in the moment of whatever it is you’re doing, all those negative feelings will disappear.
Your to-do list will never end, but when you’re too worried about checking things off you lose presence.
When, instead, you’re present in the moment, then you will realize you feel vibrant.
You’re in harmony.
Life is beautiful and when you’re in harmony with the moments of your life, you add more value to your life. The ultimate key to harmony is presence, being fully there.
Once you’re in harmony, you’re able to enjoy your time with your family or friends fully and when you go back to work you no longer feel guilty or like you’re missing something from other pieces of your life.
And when those negative feelings are gone, you can bring more focus to your work.
There may be some days when you fall out of harmony and fall out of alignment for any number of reasons.
But you can instantly get your harmony back by simply focusing on being in the present in whatever you’re doing.
Take a moment and say, “Who do I want to be in this situation? Who is going to show up to this – the guilty version of myself, the impatient version, the version that lives in fear, or the version that’s a great parent?”
When you take the pressure off yourself about having everything checked off and perfect, your guilt will disappear.
What you need to do is evaluate your priorities based on the season of life that you’re in.
Winter, when you feel like you don’t know where life is going and it’s scary but you can choose to either live in fear or to learn the lessons winter is teaching you.
Spring is a time of opportunity and sowing new seeds.
Summer, when you haven’t achieved your desired results yet but you have to stick with it.
And fall, when you’re harvesting.
You need to evaluate your priorities based on the season your life is in and intentionally prioritize what matters most in that season.
If you think that everything is important at any time in your life, maybe that’s true but not everything is a priority.
Choose where you need to put the majority of your focus, and then schedule out the other areas of your life and be fully present in those moments.
This is called Work-Life Integration.
You pick your priorities based on what you value most in your life.
You figure out what you prioritize most, based on your core values and the season of your life, schedule everything else around that, and then make sure you are laser focusing on being fully present so you can be more productive and more fulfilled and get more done in all those different moments of your schedule.
If you’re always feeling like you need a break or you need to escape, that is a sign that you are not living in alignment with your priorities and instead are expecting perfection and making everything a priority.
You need to stop that now so that you don't have a life that you need to escape from constantly.
You must intentionally recharge your batteries so that you can bring more of yourself back to what you do.
Put your energy into your highest priorities and schedule time for others, and quit trying to make it all balance.
Balance is a myth.
If you struggle with this and you’re in a place where you want to understand it all logically, you need to take our free “What’s Your Unique Success Archetype” quiz. It will help you identify how you approach success and to see what way you are limiting yourself.
Take the 5-minute quiz to discover your archetype:
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