If you want to know how you're really doing, Slim suggests you stop comparing your life to some mythical state of perfect balance (or your co-workers or friends). Instead, try pondering the following questions:
- Do I enjoy my life while I am living it? When you step outside in the morning, do you take a deep breath and marvel at the wonder that the sun keeps coming up each day? Do you watch your kids (or pets!) intently and notice how perfect they are in their own quirky way? If you hate most of what you are doing most of the time, and miss the beauty of a full moon or the smile of a stranger because you are so busy rushing around, you may want to slow down and pay attention.
- Do I have a very short list of people I make a priority, without exception? The more our friend count stacks up on social media sites, and the more our client base grows, the harder it becomes to give sustained, quality support to those in your network. Emails linger in the inbox, and @ replies go unanswered on Twitter. But some relationships need to be nurtured every day, without exception.
- Do I "stay on my own yoga mat" as yoginis say, and not compare myself to others who are smarter, more productive, more witty, more sexy and more funny? I am lucky enough to hang out with some pretty smart and accomplished people. At times, their level of productivity overwhelms me. They negotiate great book deals, furiously write blog posts, close new business deals, and make time to eat right and work out. When I have a moment of compare and despair, as my friend Martha Beck says, I immediately step back and revisit my own vision of success.
- Do I wield a "No Axe" with great gusto, cutting unenergizing, unprofitable and unstrategic activities from my calendar? Charlie Gilkey wrote a great post explaining the criteria of Opportunity, Visibility and Cash Flow. If your daily activities do not fall into these three areas (including nurturing critical relationships), it is time to raise your no axe and whack them off.
- Are things a bit better today than they were yesterday? I have a lot of big personal and work development projects: a healthier and more fit body, a new book, a new body of speaking work... The big list is overwhelming. But each day, I take a small step toward completing it.
Read More on BNET:
- Why You Should Forget About Work-Life Balance
- Gen Y Insists on Work-Life Balance Despite Recession
- The 100 Best Companies for Work-Life Balance