Work-Life Balance: Is It a Myth? You CAN Manage all your Roles and Responsibilities without Losing your Mind, your Marriage or your Business

She wakes up before everyone else. After a splash of cold water, she enjoys a smoothie before heading out the door for a brisk walk in the cool morning air. In her ears, her iPod plays the latest download from her audio book collection: “Secrets of the Millionaire Mind” by T. Harv Eker. She returns home, 30 minutes later, feeling pumped about the day ahead. While showering, she visualizes the day ahead: successful meetings with prospects, approvals for projects, energizing staff huddle, and dinner with the hubby and kids. As she gets herself groomed for the day, she takes one last lingering look in the mirror, happy with what she sees and proud of the woman she has become. Now, it’s time to wake the family. …

Is that how your days begin? Do you take care of yourself first before setting out for the day? Do you invest in your own well-being or are you too busy taking care of everyone else?

Or…do you find yourself hitting the snooze button because you want to delay what’s to come: dreading your meetings, scrambling to find your keys, stressing over what to make the kids for lunch, and pulling on the least wrinkled blouse in your closet, as you dash out of the house, shouting, “Don’t forget the milk!” to your husband whose turn it is to drop the kids at school.

How can you stay on top of it all? Is work-life balance really a dream? Did you think, once upon a time, that YOU could manage it all because you had what it takes, only to come face-to-face with the stark reality that it’s a fairy tale to imagine a life like the one I described above and that the best you can hope for is to eke out a half-decent wage doing what you do, and hope that, by the time you and your husband retire, you have enough of a nest egg to be comfortable and go to Florida for the winters?

It can really be disheartening, can’t it? And then, you go to networking sessions and you are surrounded by other women who are struggling to keep their minds, marriages and businesses together, and they are running themselves into the ground. Misery sure does love company!

Is that what you want for yourself? Success at all costs?

I would argue that it isn’t success at all if you have to struggle and if it costs you those things which you hold most dear. What do you think?

It can be overwhelming to wear all the hats that you do: mother, daughter, wife, business owner, volunteer, boss, friend, sister. It doesn’t matter how many hats you wear because, these days, we are pulled in so many directions with competing priorities that our schedules can be mesmerizing at best. Overwhelmed is, by far, the most common place that my clients find themselves because they have so much on their plates. I know this from personal experience, too.

The great news is that overwhelm has been a great teacher of mine and I’ve passed those lessons on to my clients and witnessed amazing transformations as they have learned how to regain control of their lives and experience joy every day, at home and at work.

Here is my 7-step PROCESS for managing overwhelm and creating more balance in your life:

  1. Get Present. Take a deep breath and a big step back so you can look at your life from 10,000 feet. The space will give you an opportunity to change your perspective. That is the first step in regaining control and creating a balanced life that excites you.
  2. Get Real. Take an objective look at your life and identify what is working well and where you could use an overhaul. Look for opportunities to streamline, delegate, purge, and stop doing things altogether that do not serve your higher good.
  3. Get Over It. Stop blaming everyone else for the situation you are currently experiencing. Trust that there is a better way. Drop the judgment and you will be able to see what is possible. Forgive yourself and let go of past mistakes so you can move forward and have a fresh start.
  4. Get Clear. It’s time to figure out what success really means to you. Consider what brings you joy and create a life around that. Incorporate happiness, gratitude, and service into your daily life. Feel how it will be to move through this life transition with grace and confidence.
  5. Get Engaged. You deserve a life that is fulfilling at home and at work. You are worthy of success as you define it. Imagine how wonderful it will be to be equally excited about going to the office as you are about going home. Imagine how that change will impact those you work with and those you love. Connect with the bigger reasons why creating a life that excites you is worth the effort. Commit to a new approach.
  6. Get Serious. Remember that every choice you make brings you closer to or farther away from your vision of success. Cultivate the skill of deliberate intent and practice mindful decision making. Your confidence will grow as you make more choices that serve to bring you satisfaction at home and work and the “tough” choices will no longer seem so difficult.
  7. Get Support. You are not alone in how you feel now and you are also not alone on this journey. Surround yourself with people who support your vision of a balanced life, one that inspires you, and inspires others. Stay in the conversation and keep motivated. Celebrate your progress every day!

It is my pleasure to provide you with the support you need to manage overwhelm and create more balance in your life. It is not a myth. It is possible and you deserve it. I invite your comments and questions at Lisa@LisaLPayne.com.

outdoor-headshot_July2012Lisa L. Payne, BBA, MER, CPC is President of Connections for Success Inc. To her corporate clients, she offers executive coaching, motivational addresses, and a new interactive workshop called “Engage and Excite Your Team through Change: 7 Steps to Create a Culture of Empowerment.” She is also the author of “What If They Knew? Secrets of an Impressive Woman.” Check out her website http://LisaLPayne.com for coaching programs and corporate workshops, or visit her on Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or YouTube.

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