By: Derrick Chevalier
Ever increasing work demands, technology such as the Smartphone (an oxymoron), Twitter, Facebook, Yahoo and other social networks (another oxymoron), new strains of the flu, colds, food borne diseases, kids involved in school, sports, music, theatre, vocal, dance and other lessons, friends and family members with very different and continuously changing schedules and personal preferences combined with other social, political and financial concerns can be overwhelming and make it seemingly impossible to achieve an acceptable balance between work health and family; or am I the ONLY one in the world who feels like it’s IMPPOSIBLE to achieve balance in my life sometimes?
If you like so many other people find yourself waking up earlier, going to bed later, working harder in between and still feel like there is more to do than you will ever get done, join the club you are NOT alone! Given the demands of work, we all need to have a better standard of health, we need to eat better, exercise, get proper hydration and proper sleep and spend time alone as well as with friends and family; yet with all we have on our plates far too many people just feel like they are falling further and further behind every day, spending more time at work (even when we are at home), eating out more or eating far too many foods with less than optimal nutrition to support the physical and mental demands placed on us and on our children and despite the phenomenal growth of social networks many people find that they have less time to invest and grow quality relationships with friends or with family; so are we all doomed to work ourselves to death or to die morbid deaths of gradually failing health and lost relationships or are there things that we can do to provide a greater degree of balance between our work health and families?
In a word YES there are things we can do, choices we can make and actions that we can take that will go a long way toward recalibrating the demands we place on ourselves and those placed on us as the result of our obligations and preferences where work health and family are concerned, we can practice what Harrison-Chevalier, Inc. refers to as Dynamic Time Management (DTM).
Here are a few highlights:
1. Stop saying “I don’t have enough time”! How many times have you heard someone say, “I don’t have enough time”? The truth is that we’ve all said this at one time or another but the other truth is that saying it doesn’t make it true does it? The fact is that EVERYONE in the world gets exactly the SAME amount of time everyday don’t we? We all have roughly twenty-four hours, daylight savings or no daylight savings we all get 24 hours. Therefore it’s not how many hours we get it’s what we do with the hours we get, that is the key difference between people, not how many hours but what we do with those hours that makes the difference in how we balance or fail to balance work health and family.
2. Take an inventory. Because we are all creatures of habit finding out how we use our time and how we make choices about the way we use our time will provide a foundation for figuring out how to change the way we choose to use our time and again how we are able to balance work health and family. What is a “typical” daily schedule at home? What is a “typical” daily schedule at work? The first thing people say is “I don’t have a typical schedule, sure you do, you may have two or three variations but at the end of the day you are doing the same things and making the same choices every time those choices or variations come up.
3. Review & categorize your inventory. After you’ve completed an inventory of how you are already using your time, review your activities and categorize them using several simple categories such as “Must Do”, “Like to Do”, “Optional”. The next step is to really consider which if any of the “Must Do” activities can or could be done by someone other than you? Next, categorize the things you “Like to Do” a few minutes here will yield great insight as you discover that some of the things you “Like to Do” you don’t like to do anymore or you aren’t willing to keep doing them if they are costing you more time than you are willing to invest given what they cost you in time and balance.
4. Develop some simple goals. Your goals should be categorized this way “Body” “Mind” “Spirit”
5. Make a decision to change the way you spend your time, treat the twenty-four hours you have everyday like you would a strict budget, weigh your choice and make sure to include at least one activity from the “Body” “Mind” and “Spirit” list of goals you created at least three times a week.
6. Get comfortable with the fact that we are all living in a continuous “State of flux”. Just coming to realization that you are only going to achieve an ultimate balance in life after you are dead! The fact is that we are never going to achieve and maintain a perfect balance given all of the demands placed upon us however, by accepting this reality we can immediately reduce the mental and physical stress we feel. When we recognize that sometimes we are going to be out of balance and then DECIDE to make different choices based on our goals and on our limitations.
7. Look up the definition of the word “DECIDE” and buy a copy of “Beyond Negotiating: From Fear to Fearless for specific actions plans and more suggestions.
These simple steps can and will immediately create greater balance in our work, health and family.