Updated: Dec 10, 2019
It’s Friday night and you’re huddled over your computer like a gremlin in a cave surrounded by take out boxes, clad in sweatpants with a furrowed brow that may have started to become your default face it’s been stuck in the same position for so long. You catch a glimpse of yourself in your monitor and yep, there it is waiting for you. The self-pity about it being a Friday which is basically synonymous in America with “TAKE A BREAK, WHY DON’T YA?” and here you are slaving away, for what?
And so you spiral into a tornado of mental self destruction hyper-focusing on areas of your life that you aren’t nourishing and an hour and a half, two ice cream pints and several desperate screams of “I AM INADEQUATE!” later, you decide to keep working.
Controversial comment incoming ...
Balance is not a noun or an adjective. It’s a verb.
There’s this idea we have to have balance in our life but really, it’s just about being in the moment for whatever you’re doing and aligning your mind with that singular task. We get overwhelmed because we think of balance as doing it all/having it all/being it all. The reality is that when you’re doing one thing, that’s the only thing you should be doing. Balance is presence. It’s taking on a task with a mindfulness that it’s the most important thing you should be doing RIGHT now.
This is where a value assessment of what you’re doing for your business and why is so important.
Because when you freak out on a Friday night that you’re working on a project and aren’t on a date, you have to remind yourself what is important to you, if you’re honoring it and consistently checking in to make sure it’s still valuable to you. If having a social life is important to you, you have to create the space in your life to make it a priority and keep your social meetings the same way you keep to your business deadlines. You’re not a martyr. You can’t do everything, but making space in your life for both personal and business-related deadlines will add in the expectation that you can do both. You just have to reevaluate your agenda to make each a priority. Maybe that means this Friday you’re working late to make a deadline so that next Tuesday you can make a happy hour. Be present for both tasks and there you will find the balance that everything is going to happen.
Lean into this trust when you start to feel overwhelmed.
Remember that worry gets us nowhere. The more time you worry, the less time you spend being present and getting your to-do list done. Own your time and only commit to what you can handle both professionally and socially and through this, trust that it everything will fall into place as it was supposed to.
And remember… Yes! It is a learning process.
Tune into what you need, as that will evolve. Make time for what’s important by building your business sustainably. Growth looks different than scaling which feels different than sustaining. The savvy business owner is focused on what is most important NOW. Pick a thing. Give it your all. Then take a break, a nice slow deep breathe, and start again.
YES, it will be scary and awkward. It will also be a huge win, a new sale and a well-deserved vacation. There’s not always a definitive yes or no, pass or fail, sometimes you have to let the past go, stop worrying about maybe, and simply focus on the task at hand. This is THE most productive, problem solving, powerful use of your expertise and wisdom. Right now.
Deep breath, my friend, everything is going according to plan.