The expression “Work–life balance” was first used in the United Kingdom in the late 1970s to describe the balance between an individual’s work and personal life. It implies that you do equal parts work and life.
Why are we so determined to balance our lives? What is balance? You do not have a personal life and a professional life, you have a life. Decide how you want to spend it.
Reframe your perspective from “life balance” to “life choice.” You have a choice to make with your life and to live life at the fullest, here are some suggestions:
- Plan to Play – there is an entire field of study in the subject of play. Dr Stuart Brown has a TED talk and a book titled Play: How it Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination and Invigorates the Soul. He makes the case that the opposite of play isn’t work, it’s depression. His research of homicidal males revealed they were deprived of play. Highly successful people have a rich play life. Add some play to your life.
- Stop Energy Suckers – there are activities and people that drain energy. Wherever possible, eliminate them. When you cannot eliminate, insulate yourself. Energy suckers rob you of a precious resource. You have a choice, don’t let them steal your energy, your joy or your life.
- Live on Purpose – Neuroscience research has shown that one of the most devastating conditions for humans is when there is a perceived lack of choice. This leads to feeling trapped and hopeless. The reality is that you always have choices. Sometimes you need to step outside your circumstances to shift your perspective and see the choices that exist.
Lead an unbalanced life that works for you. Just remember that you have the power to choose. We suggest that you choose to incorporate play into your life, stop the energy suckers and live on purpose.