It’s been a while since my last blog post. I almost forgot how to format this post.
Just kidding…I could never really forget though because at my core, I’m a writer and blogger.
I’ve been pretty quiet on social media since mid-December and that has been quite intentional.
As I’ve been reflecting I’ve come to an awareness that I need to share, especially if it will prevent you from the discouragement I felt.
I took a 4 week hiatus to gain clarity. My husband and I spent a week in Destin, Florida lying on five different beaches as we celebrated our Second Anniversary.
When we returned, I went into #selfcare mode. The door to my home office stayed closed. I logged out of my business account on Instagram, turned off notifications and refused to do anything Coaching related.
I was licking my wounds for 4 weeks. And here’s why…
Not My INTENTion
Every year I choose one word – a quality that I want to work on. I enjoy having a theme to keep me focused all year. Some of these in past years have been Resiliency, Patience, Gratitude and for 2019 #myintent and #oneword was Balance.
But, last year I did not achieve balance. At best, I fumbled at juggling.
True, I made a lot of progress with making my business more niche focused and getting a clear business plan. My husband and I even did a bit of traveling. My greatest accomplishment was attending a Theocratic school to hone my teaching skills in my ministry.
But, at the end of it all… there was no balance – at least not how I thought Balance would look and feel. What I realize now is that my idea of Balance was based on a limiting belief and unrealistic expectation.
I was comparing myself to other entrepreneurs and holding myself to the same standards and limits.
I wasn’t accepting that I 1) am a solopreneur (me, myself and I) and 2) my priorities are different.
For me the three most important aspects of my life are Ministry, Family and Business…in that order.
I’ve learned that the vocabulary you use to identify goals should reflect your core values and you must be very clear what achieving those goals looks and feels like to you.
Here’s the conundrum about Balance… it literally means an even distribution, whether it’s even amount of time, energy, money or other resource.
However, there’s a hierarchy of importance that exists for me. First is my Spirituality. Next comes Family. And giving priority to these two areas energizes me to give of myself in my Business.
So for me, the word Balance feels like an unattainable oxymoron.
In my attempt to evenly distribute time, energy and resources across things that are not of equal importance in my life, I experienced extreme anxiety.
When I initially chose balance as my #oneword, I was really striving for stability, organization, and clarity as I worked progressively towards establishing my business.
I don’t want to neglect the two greater areas of life (Spirituality and Family) for the sake of Business.
And, I had the mindset of “by any means necessary” to accomplish it. So, there were many days and weeks where I stretched myself thin, putting a burden on myself that each DAY should reflect an equal amount of time and energy spread across three areas of importance.
I was exhausted – mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually.
My intention completely backfired because I wasn’t actually clear on what “BALANCE” looks like for me.
I am now determined to keep a set number of weekly ministry hours, work hours, stay organized and allow myself rest. My intention for 2020 is JOY and I’m making sure the things that I love (writing, blogging, etc.) are included in my Business model.
I even bought a new Tools4Wisdom 2020 Planner (bring on the check lists!).
At the beginning of each week, I list my Spiritual, Family, and Business priorities. I write in pencil to allow room for unexpected changes. At the end of each day and week, I review my check lists and if necessary I’ll move a task to next week. (Because well…LIFE!)
This is what Balance looks and feels like for me.
A DIFFERENT Perspective
Have you made maintaining balance as your NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION?
What does balance mean to you? How will you achieve it daily or weekly? Do you have several areas or projects that require your time, energy or resources?
Let me offer you an alternative way of thinking that may keep you sane and content at the end of the day.
Replace Balance with Prioritize and Dedicate.
Forget work-life balance…Do the thing you want and create systems to support that. Perfectly imbalanced in the direction you want to go is perfectly acceptable. – Richie Norton
PRIORITIZE what areas of your life are most important on a weekly and daily basis. Then DEDICATE yourself to fulfilling that task.
Stay in the moment.
When you’re in “work mode” be in work mode. When you’re with family, make every moment count.
At the end of the day, as long as you have given the necessary and desired attention to the tasks of that day…sleep well.