Balance is always a hot topic regarding the workplace. For many leaders, balance is one of those elusive concepts that they long for but feel they never really achieve. It can be hard to feel any semblance of balance when you dedicate the majority of your workday to serving your teammates and then have little time to left get your own work done.
So, maybe it’s time we reframe the concept of “balance.” For a leader, I don’t believe balance is this magical, always-longed-for-but-never-achieved concept that means you always dedicate adequate and equal time to everything going on in your life – work, family, faith, hobbies, rest and relaxation, and so on.
Balance, rather, is something much more fluid, and our perspective on balance changes based on whether or not we enjoy what we do. This is especially true in our work. If you’re unhappy in your job, having balance between your work and personal life is a top priority because you need to have a lot of other things going on that are fulfilling to compensate for having a job you don’t enjoy.
On the other hand, if you enjoy what you do, you’re willing to have less balance between your work and personal life because you find your work fulfilling and you don’t need as many other things going on to feel “balanced.”
We can be tempted to define balance based on someone else’s standards, but balance is an ever-changing concept, and it differs for each person. Our need for balance and the things that make us feel balanced change based on our leadership walk and our current season in life.
This week, I’d encourage you to think about your idea of balance. Do you feel like your life is balanced? If not, consider how you define balance and what you need to do to feel like one area of your life isn’t all-consuming and unfulfilling. I believe balance lies within the person, not the job, so look for ways to find balance where you currently are. Write out your priorities and stick to them by saying no to items that aren’t in your priority list. Schedule things in your personal calendar – like a lunchtime workout – just as you would a client meeting so that you’re intentionally making time for other things that bring you satisfaction. If your job is just a job, maybe you should consider reviving an old hobby. Perhaps you need to get back to your faith. You might need to simply stop applying someone else’s idea of balance to your own life and figure out what it means to you.
Finding the right balance can be a challenge, but it’s certainly attainable, and it’s definitely worth seeking because having it makes the time you dedicate to every area of your life feel more satisfying.