There is really no such thing as “Work-Life Balance”. It’s BULL$#%! and we are making ourselves crazy trying to find it!
With all the discussion about how to achieve work-life balance, we have overlooked a big problem with this idea: our lives are not supposed to be balanced with equal time for everything. When every priority claims itself as the most urgent, and there always seems to be more to do than time to do it, maintaining focus on your top priorities can be difficult.
Can you be the executive who thrives at business, the parent who volunteers at their child’s school, the friend who maintains an active social life, and yet still remain fit and fun? Maybe for a short time, but it certainly isn’t sustainable.
THE DATA IS IN!
How far have we really come in helping work and life function better together?
According to a global report last year by Randstad Employer Brand Research, after an attractive salary and long-term job security (58 percent and 46 percent, respectively), 45 percent of surveyed employees note good work-life balance as an important attribute in gauging the attractiveness of an organization.
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Identify high payoff activities and create shared expectations.
Develop a personal and professional goal setting model to stay on track.
Regain focus and attention, manage stress, and take care of your most important resource – YOU!
THEY WORK-LIFE BALANCE MYTH
THIS IS YOUR BRAIN ON WORK-LIFE BALANCE
On an average day, we are bombarded with thousands of images and hundreds of thousands of pieces of new information. We hold all of this information in our subconscious. In reality, our short-term memory can only store two to four items at once. When we are feeling overwhelmed or stressed, it’s not necessarily because we have so much to do; it’s trying to remember it all and keep it at the forefront of our minds. How can we begin to focus on the conversation or task at hand with all that pinging, beeping, and buzzing distracting us?
DEFINE YOUR PRIORITIES
There is no shortage of stress in our lives, and the list of priorities we have to juggle isn’t getting any shorter. This never-ending deluge of information and our constant need to stay connected is rendering us less effective, preventing us from staying focused on any one thing for any length of time. Throughout this process you must be honest with yourself. Most of us would like to think we value relationships more than money, and family more than work. But do we really? When push comes to shove, do your actions support your real priorities? In other words, do your actions match your intentions? Most of us have gotten pretty adept at prioritizing our schedule. Scheduling our priorities should be our real goal.
BELIEVE YOU’RE WORTH THE BALANCE
The truth is some things should take precedence over others. These are our priorities, and we can only focus on one priority at a time. Instead of stressing yourself out trying to achieve the elusive idea of balance, try identifying your top three to five priorities and spend 80 percent of your time on them without apologizing for it. Schedule time for your priorities. If necessary, save money for them. Make sure you have emotional and physical energy for them.
Shift how you think about your goals if you’re trying to achieve something of major significance.
Anne Grady is a Speaker, Author, and #TruthBomb Dropper.
Anne shares practical strategies that can be applied both personally and professionally to improve relationships, navigate change, and triumph over adversity. And she’ll make you laugh while she does it. Anne is a two time TEDx speaker, and her work has been featured in numerous media outlets, including Harvard Business Review, Entrepreneur, Forbes, Fast Company and Inc. magazines, CNN, ESPN, and FOX Business. She is the best selling author of 52 Strategies for Life, Love & Work and Strong Enough: Choosing Courage, Resilience and Triumph.