I believe achieving a work-life balance is a myth. As a result, I believe we can learn how to have a balanced life. I am a Minimalist who believes you should build work around your life and not build a life around your work.
Someone else may believe work is their life and love work almost more than life itself. In both extremes, work-life balance is never achieved and may not even be the goal.
Good and bad. Day and Night. Even babies recognize balance and fairness as good as they instinctively look astounded if treated unfairly. Give them something smaller and you take something larger in their presence and see what happens 😉
One day my mother was in the kitchen slicing pieces of cake for my 5-year-old and a few of his friends. As she was going out to the backyard to serve them I told her there was a problem.
One slice was smaller than the others. She did not believe that would be a problem as if she never met her Grandson before. LOL.
All parents know what happened next. I fight ensued. No one wanted the smaller piece. The children had a deep sense of fairness and innately believed it was silly to insist someone accept the smaller piece.
At some point, almost all adults lose those innocent childhood sensibilities. Maybe we can infuse a sense of fairness into our lives and learn how to have a balanced life.
Here I will show you how to leave work at work and how to have a balanced life and enjoy your newfound freedom.
Leave Work At Work
Many of us begin a career or work life eager to please. We have something to prove. We work hard and long. Don’t get me wrong, I believe that working hard is the key to the most success.
I will always believe in working hard to achieve what I want. The problem with the scenario I just described is we almost never develop an off switch.
We go years like the energizer bunny and never just turn off from work. We oftentimes wear it like a badge of honor. Whether it’s work from your 9 to 5’s or work from your side hustle we need to learn to leave work at work regularly.
The way to do this successfully is to schedule “leave work at work time” just as vigorously as we schedule our work time. When creating that boundary you relax more because there are no blurred lines.
When you schedule that time in your calendar it becomes a law etched in stone. For most of us, this is beneficial because it allows us to spend less stressful intentional time with good friends and family.
Because of this, the important people in your life should be involved in the scheduling process. Every Sunday night you should create your schedule for the week and consult family and friends when appropriate.
Treat scheduling the time away from work as important as your work schedule. Do not leave any blank spaces in your schedule from the time you get up until bedtime.
Blank spaces leave room for confusion, blurred lines, and mischief. LOL. For example, if you are scheduled to have a typical boring day at work schedule 9 to 5 on your calendar. Then schedule a time for things you would like to do after work. Even if it may not even be possible.
It is proven what gets scheduled gets done. This greatly improves the potential of living the day closer to your dreams. Without the schedule, there is a greater potential of squandering the time after work and before you know it it’s bedtime ;-(
Get your boss in on this. If you do not have regular team meetings still get your boss in on the act. Schedule a regular time to check in with your boss. Let him or her know there will be times you have important things to do after quitting time.
Make your boss aware you are organized and like to keep a tight schedule. You like to keep in touch to learn if you can be of assistance in the near future and the more lead time you can get the better.
In this way, you are more likely to satisfy any request should there be a needed change in schedule. Also in the event, you would like to say no there should be time for an alternate solution.
The most important advantage is you will develop a better relationship with your boss and not only communicate when you are in trouble or when there are problems.
Hopefully, your boss will become more comfortable with you, your scheduling, and your boundaries.
Tip To Achieve Living A Balanced Life
1. Be Prepared and Expect the unexpected.
Life cannot be in balance at all times. Events that are out of your control will happen often. When you are mentally prepared for them they are less likely to throw you off and steal your joy.
Most of the unexpected can be anticipated and planned for, while others cannot. Some of the unexpected will be minor occurrences and others will border on tragedies.
All will require varying degrees of attention and focus. Remember bad times, as well as good times, are temporary. Learn to enjoy both for that fact and always learn from them both.
Work to get things back in balance. Enjoy when you succeed and always know the unexpected is always poised to raise its ugly head.
3. Seek Better Health and Wellness.
The “I will sleep when I am dead”, burn the candle at both ends, struggle porn lifestyle is no way to live. Allowing a good diet, health, and wellness to go by the wayside for any amount of time is ill-advised.
We all would like to remain in great health to be there for our families. Enjoy doing the things we love most for as long as we can. Hopefully, staying healthy will include visiting your great-grandkids and riding your Harley Davidson, or something like that. LOL.
Whatever diet and exercise method you choose to reach your health and wellness goals be vigilant. We all know the unexpected happens and routines may change to accommodate solutions but be sure to get enough rest and work to successfully achieve the life balance you seek.
4. Define your priorities.
Almost all people will say family is a priority and family comes first. Unfortunately, that just scratches the surface. You will have to define that priority more clearly for yourself.
You will have to define and try to create the near-perfect mix between, spouse (or significant other), Kids (if you have any), parents, siblings (if you have any), and other family members.
Just thinking about it can be exhausting but I am sure whatever arrangement you are using now would work well with a minimal amount of tweaking.
Friends play a significant role in our lives and can be as important as family members at times. Allow me to be perfectly clear here.
When I say define priorities I really mean it. I am not talking about just dividing time equally between these groups. I am talking about creating a hierarchal order and treating each group accordingly.
Some relationships contribute more value when seeking to live a more balanced life.
5. Build Relationships.
I would like to think people and friendships are more trouble than they are worth ( I can be a bit of a lone Wolf) but Harvard Research says differently. Apparently, relationships are very important when seeking a longer, healthier life.
Who knew? LOL.
“It’s silly to try to escape other people’s faults. They are inescapable. Just try to escape your own.” – Marcus Aurelius
People tend to feel more fulfilled when they have a great network of friends, participate in club activities or just get together for fun regularly.
If you do not enjoy these types of relationships, you should work harder to cultivate them as it is a foundation for creating a balanced life. This relationship will become the #1 motivation to help you learn to leave work at work.
Avoid sacrificing these relationships for work because you are working too much if you are really serious about learning how to live a balanced life.
You need this outlet.
6. Create a stable financial base.
It’s almost impossible to live a balanced life if you have money problems. What do your finances look like? Are you working paycheck to paycheck?
Are you earning enough to meet your needs and save for retirement? Is your retirement fund lacking or nonexistent?
“The intention of voluntary simplicity is not to dogmatically live with less. It’s a more demanding intention of living with balance. This is a middle way that moves between the extremes of poverty and indulgence.” – Duane Elgin 1940s
The key to financial stability is to feel in control of your financial future. The idea of financial stability will look different from person to person. For example, I am a Minimalist and require much less money to create a balanced life than people who follow other lifestyles.
To learn how to have a balanced life you need to live within your means, earning enough money to allow options. If you are working too much and still do not have enough money to meet your needs something is wrong.
7. Create a Lifestyle Business Environment.
Whether you are an entrepreneur or climbing the corporate ladder ask yourself if you are contributing toward living a balanced life regularly.
Are you doing something you enjoy or do you feel like just another cog in a giant machine or a rat in the rat race? Are you excited to begin your day and do you feel like you are making progress?
Is the ladder you are climbing up against the correct entrepreneurial or corporate wall? Will you like what you see should you reach the top?
Can you create an income around the way you would like to live instead of living your life around the way you create income? If you love the way you create income learning how to have a balanced life will become easier to achieve.
8. Support your community.
Supporting your community can consist of something as small as keeping your lawn immaculate or something more involved as volunteering at your local hospital.
Giving back works wonders for uplifting your heart and soul. I believe in balance and believe everyone is rewarded proportionally by giving back.
I have not met anyone who does not have a story of being rewarded shortly after the act of giving back.
More importantly, it simply feels good. Giving back by writing a check does not feel as good as doing the work.
9. Treat Yourself.
That’s correct. Treating yourself and not feeling guilty about it regularly is a key component to living a balanced life. I know it’s hard for some people to treat themselves but they need to get over it and give it a try. Guilt-free.
Remember you are the asset and you are the key. Your world depends on your ability to function properly and many others depend on you doing so. Many important things cease without your ability to produce.
This is why Airlines instruct you to place your oxygen mask first before assisting others in an emergency situation. Even before assisting your children. Yeah! The asset ( Yeah, you. LOL) can not do anything for others if not in a tip, top form.
Treating yourself may consist of buying yourself something nice every now and then or hiding in your bedroom closet for an hour for a little peace and quiet. Whatever works for you.
Regularly treating yourself can be rejuvenating, help reduce stress, and boost your overall mood. Wow! Just saying that is somewhat relaxing for me 😉
10. Feed your spiritual side.
This can be a touchy subject but I will trust you to know what fills your needs and any given time. I have never stopped evolving spiritually and I would assume many people are continually evolving also.
Regularly connecting with your spiritual side is very important to living a balanced life. Spiritually often dictates what our values may be. The rules I live by. Our ethos!
Connecting with your spiritual side daily will help keep you grounded. It may help a person realize working 80 hours a week, and neglecting family may not be a great way to live. Or going on a shopping spree for the third weekend in a row may be a cover for other problems.
Spirituality can be a great tool to help learn how to have a balance.
Work, career, or livelihood is usually the #1 obstacle to achieving living a balanced life. Just the act of learning how to leave work at work yields enormous positive results on health and happiness.
There is no need to stop there. I have 10 other steps I believe are essential to learning how to have a balanced life. Do you agree or disagree?
Is there something you would like to add or delete? Please tell us what you think is essential to learn how to have a balanced life in the comments below.