There’s a lot of talk about life and work balance as well as boundaries these days. I believe both are important. Without balance, you will burn out and be useless to both your business and your family, not to mention yourself. In terms of reaching your goals, burn-out will set you back drastically. But how do you achieve a life/work balance and what do boundaries have to do with it?
The first thing you have to do is to have a dream. Then you need to decide to turn that dream into a goal. If you don’t, it will always remain simply a dream. Each ultimate goal can only be accomplished if it is broken down into smaller, more manageable goals.
Break you ultimate goal down into how many years you think it will take to accomplish. Decide what you want to achieve in the first year. Break that year’s goal down into monthly portions, each portion building on the last one. Once you have monthly goals, create weekly goals to achieve in each month. From there, you can assign goals to reach each day. With that in place and by following that plan, you will then be able to work steadily towards your ultimate goal.
But what do boundaries have to with my goals?
In order to achieve each goal, you need to allocate time in your diary for the actions which will help you accomplish your ultimate goal. Time in which nothing is allowed to intrude, if at all possible.
A Dedicated Diary is essential in helping you set boundaries for any goal you wish to accomplish. It’s called a Dedicated Diary for a reason. It’s not a list of suggestions, or things to accomplish when you can find the time for them. It’s rather a set of times in which you are dedicated to one thing. For example, in my week I have time set aside for marketing. I have to be committed to marketing my business or I may wake up one morning and discover I have no clients for that month. Finding new clients will then be as arduous as starting a company from scratch. If I am committed to marketing on a consistent basis however, I should always have a steady stream of clients.
The 8 areas in which you need to have balance
There is a lot more to work and life balance than you may realise. There is a tool which I take clients through during coaching. During the session we explore what is really important to you as an individual, what your dreams and goals are, and what is your definition of success in all areas of your life. I believe there are 8 areas which need to be kept in balance to create a well-rounded and successful human being. I call this tool the Wheel of Life.
The Wheel of Life
1. Your Health
2. Your Family – you can include Friends here as well.
3. Your Physical Environment
4. Your Business and Career
5. Your Finances
6. Your Personal Growth
8. Fun and Recreation
All of these need to be in balance. Those that are out of balance will suffer, and so will you. Let me be clear, by balancing, I don’t mean juggling. When your life is in balance there is control, calm, purpose and achievement. How do you think you’re doing at the moment? Are any of these areas out of balance? Are any being forgotten all together? Here is a typical week from my personal Dedicated Diary.
As you can see, I have time in my diary for all 8 areas in the Wheel of Life, even when and what to snack on to ensure my health gets the appropriate attention. A dedicated Diary is the best way to ensure nothing gets forgotten, that you are not trying to cram anything in at the last minute and that you are developing both your personal and business growth at the same time.
The one area for entrepreneurs which often suffers is Family, especially in the early stages of setting up a business. Remember that whatever you do consistently becomes a habit. If you want to begin as you mean to continue you should ensure healthy amounts of family time are written in to your diary. And then be committed to that time.
The trick to using your diary in order to get you to your goal is committed consistency. You can’t master a skill all at once. It takes time and practise. Some aspects will be difficult. If you are a night owl, getting up at 5am every morning, including the weekends, will feel like a Herculean task, but after six weeks of dedication and action it will become a habit, and you can move on to mastering the next skill – not opening your emails until lunchtime. Believe me, for a business person that one can be harder to do than getting up at 5am.
If you need someone to coach you out of survival and into success, starting with getting your work & life into balance, contact me today.