Life is far from simple. We all have multiple responsibilities at home and at work. Add to that, our relationships and our bodies need to stay healthy––if we value them.
That’s the key.
We make time for what we value. By setting aside time for the things that are most important, we will master the balancing act of life.
Think of the various dimensions in your life. Your professional, personal, financial, physical, relational, mental, spiritual and charitable worlds all need your attention.
Like you, I’ve got my 9-to-5 job in commercial property management (professional). But I also have my EverSmarts platform where I get to serve you (entrepreneurial).
Then I’ve got my care of my father and daughters to think about (relational). And, as many of you know, I’m pursuing my life as an amateur triathlete––which means hours in the pool, on my bike, and in my running shoes each week (physical).
In addition to volunteering time at my church (charitable), I stick to a solid morning routine of meditation, affirmations, appreciations and prayer (mental, emotional, and spiritual).
What I value goes in my calendar.
When you put what you value in your calendar, you don’t have to decide whether or not to do it. It’s already there. It’s just like making an appointment with someone else. An appointment made with yourself is just as important as an appointment made with a client. You do not break it.
Once you’ve scheduled an activity, there’s no negotiation. You’re on automatic pilot. You don’t have to step back and decide if it’s the right thing. You don’t have to continuously question its priority.
A friend of mine schedules everything. First, are her daily disciplines––meditation, writing time, exercise. Then, there’s time with her friends and family. She doesn’t fight with herself about whether or not she should do something. She schedules what she values.
Her non-negotiables are her daily disciplines. But if a conflict arises that prevents her from doing them first thing in the morning, she puts these activities back on her calendar for later in the day.
This keeps her balanced and prepared for when she has to do some heavy lifting with clients throughout the week.
The same goes for me. When I’ve made a decision to put something on my calendar, I’ve already weighed its importance. I don’t have to wonder if it’s the right thing to do at the right time.
When we schedule the right things for the right reasons, it’s time to honor them.
This is how life flows.
When we’re out of balance, we usually bump up against obstacles and frustrations. When we spend too much time in one area at the expense of another, we’re out of flow.
We may experience more stress and irritability––and we definitely suffer a lot of guilt about not exercising, not checking in with the family, forgetting a friend’s birthday––and falling short on a client deliverable.
To keep my life in the flow and balanced, I take everything that’s in my Outlook calendar for the week and write it in my Day-Timer®. By glancing at the week ahead, I can see how time spent doing what I value leads to more fulfillment and more favorable outcomes in all my life dimensions.
And best of all, I have the peace of mind that comes after I’ve made room for all of the things that matter to me.
Remember, if you don’t value it, you won’t make time for it. So, identify what you value, schedule it in your calendar, and then strap yourself in and know you’re heading toward the future you designed…all by scheduling it. That’s balance.
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