Looking at “Balance” in a new way

In many discussions regarding building a business, the terminology of “balance” gets thrown around.

Advice varies: from “You should pursue balance in your life” to “Forget balance, you have to go way out of balance to get anything big done in life.”

I think either extreme is unhelpful.

What if we approached “balance” as a system of maintaining many issues, while expanding our efforts on one or two ideas?

The idea is, don’t completely drop the things that are foundational while you pursue a big project.

The foundational items are the ones whose effects are seen long-term.

If we ignore eating healthy because it takes “too much time to cook,” eventually the hamburgers and soft drinks will catch up to us… through low energy levels, high blood pressure, and the subtle-yet-important effects of lack of minerals.

If we skip the workouts because “going to the gym doesn’t put money in my wallet,” eventually our energy levels fall and our thought processes become sluggish.

If we consistently spend little quality time with our families for an extended period of time, eventually they pull away from us.

But when we’re concentrating on building the business, SOMETHING has to be put aside.

For each of us, that “Something” may be different.

I suggest you look at the things that entertain but do not create strong leadership skills. I’m speaking of zoning out in front of the tv every night, spending hours scrolling through social media, or playing video games for hours on end. Every person has their weakness.

Be selective. Don’t give something up entirely if you truly enjoy it, because austerity¬† usually backfires.

For example, what if you choose ONE hour of tv to watch per day, or per week? What tv show REALLY inspires you? (I bet it’s not the news.) Record it with Tivo it and watch it afterward, (even immediately afterward if you suspect your willpower might falter while watching the live broadcast.) And if you truly feel you need the news to stay informed, listen to it in the car on the way to work, or view news articles while riding public transit. (Remember to use earphones while riding the train or bus!)

If you enjoy social media, perhaps set a timer (not just watch the clock) to allow yourself to indulge in your favorite platform for a set time (perhaps 10 minutes). Let the timer be the “bad guy.” Then set the timer to keep track until you allow yourself another social media surfing time (say, in 60 minutes).

Make a rule that helps you: for example, during the workday, if you mostly work from your computer, make your rule that you will only look at social media from your phone. During worktimes log out of the app, don’t let the app save your password, and remove the app from the background processes. If possible, put your phone across the room (so you have to get up to reach it), or put it in another room.

Make it a little difficult to “just check in for a moment.” Turn off notifications. Set a password that is about 10-15 characters long, remembering to NOT let the app save your password, and if you want to log in you will type it. I do this, because I use my phone to send texts as part of my marketing outreach, and sometimes out of boredom or frustration I find myself tapping the app to look at social media… but by the time I am nearly finished typing the long password, I consciously realize what I’m doing, so then I stop myself… at least until the timer rings.

Here are some other ideas.

If you have young children, is it necessary for you to watch every practice? Would it be OK to use some of that time to make phone calls or send business-building texts while sitting on the bleachers or in the car… however, be sure to have phone turned off and be fully present for the recitals and big games. Be there for the milestones.

If eating healthy is important but cooking takes a long time, consider cooking in big batches and freezing some meal-sized portions. My parents call this “making Big Food.” On your “working evenings” you simply reheat the frozen portion and serve with a shortcut-healthy side dish (like prewashed bagged salad). Or 1-2-3 nights a week you get takeout, and those are the evenings you spend working your business.

Something’s gotta give when you put major hours toward building a business. I hope these ideas give you inspiration to flex your schedule in a healthy way.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #trsc #balance #lookingatbalanceinanewway

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