As another long weekend winds to a close, I find myself sitting in my cottage staring out at the beautiful lake, watching the waves slowly crash in, feeling the warmth of the sun, listening to the friendly shrills and giggles of the kids, my family sitting all around me, and I feel grateful.
I think it’s so important for all of us now and again to remember to this. To stop. To look around. To smell the roses. I love that I have a great job to go to, one that challenges me, introduces me to new things, and pushes me to go further. During the week and the busy Fall and Winter I am “go go go”. Like all of us now a days, little by little we are working later and longer, sleeping less and exercising less, and we push ourselves until we crash.
Having work and life balance is unique to each of us. For a lot of us it’s not possible to achieve every day. We have demanding careers that would be unsuccessful if we left on time or didn’t spend time after hours doing extra research, (especially if you’re just starting out in your career). Those of you that have kids that need more than a “time-slot” in your day, and lets not forget family and friends, and all the other demands we have pulling us in every direction. So when we talk balance we don’t necessarily mean the scheduled up day of:
6-7am working out (exercise check)
9-5pm work (career check)
5-6pm dinner (family check)
6-7pm pottery class (hobbies check)
Balance means that in your life you are giving yourself the opportunity to experience things, enjoying different aspects in life, and not forgetting what really matters. (see this great article about The Top 5 regrets people reveal on their deathbed). Balance by being able to set goals and have ambition, but to not be consumed by the shiny things of this world.
I think the key is to be 100% into where ever you are. If you’re at work, focus on work. If you’re with the family shut work off and bring your energy to them. If you’re exercising, bring it. Check in with yourself every few months to reflect on how you’ve been spending your time and how you feel about that. We all have chapters in our life where our focus and time may be spent largely in one area, (think: new job or baby), but when looking back at your whole life, it’s fitting everything in that will give you that satisfied smile.