What is the opposite of the fear of missing out? As an introvert, the fear of doing too much of course!
Is there such a thing as work life balance? Canadian entrepreneur Arlene Dickinson said she thinks work/life balance is an idea created by men to make women feel forever guilty. I don’t know about that, but is work/life balance an attainable goal?
Her premise is that it’s not about balance but about managing the time you have and sometimes it will be more in one area than another at any given time. Rarely in balance, but spending time where it is needed, as best you can.
I had to smile. Time and all the obligations, responsibilities and opportunities. My days of parenting are behind me, yet I recall the push and pull of their demands and my needs. As a parent it is easy to feel stretched. It can get where you feel that your time is rarely your own. Toddlers or teens, they have different demands and as a parent, you must respond to them in one way or another. The trick is determining how and when.
Balance is about decision-making
The lessons learned as a parent, employee or entrepreneur, are worthwhile lessons for future stages. When will you carve out time for yourself? When do you say yes and where do you draw the limits of what you are able or wish to do? Sometimes, you must do more than what you feel is comfortable, because the time is now. At other times, you stand back and decide what can be deferred or delegated. Balance? Maybe. Or just good decision-making.
Working from home suits me to a tee. I set my own hours and can work all day without seeing anyone but my partner at the end of the day. I read a lot, write and from time to time make or take calls. It works. However, to advance in my new career, I am going to have to leave my little apartment and engage with the world. Meet new people, expand my network. And yes, eventually get in front of people and speak.
I enjoy people, getting to know their stories and what they are about. And despite my introvert ways, I also enjoy speaking. Of being out in the world and exchanging information and ideas in person. Goes to show that nothing is black and white.
To succeed in business and in life, we must connect to others, create communities and find “our people.” As comfortable as it might be for me to sequester myself in my comfortable little nest, that is not fully living, nor is it a balanced way to live.
Each of us determines how we spend our time, we all have the same twenty-four hours after all. The benefit of this stage of life is I have a better idea of what balance looks like for me and since I do, I make better decisions. No apologies, just living my life in the way it works for me. Now that’s a lesson well learned and one I’m glad I found.