One of the issues I hear the most often from my coaching members is the lack of ability to find or create a balance between work and life. When you are unclear on your why and your priorities, your business can default to your top priority, sacrificing the things you really care about. In this video, I discuss how to define your why, organize your priority, and create balance in your work and life so you can spend more time with your family (or whatever is most important to you!)
I had a call yesterday with one of our coaching clients and I asked how things were going. And the answer was less than what I had expected. And the individual indicated to me, I’m burning out. He said, I’m burning out. I don’t know what to do.
This is something I hear a lot, and it’s a part of business that’s often overlooked until it’s out of control. That’s why I want to address how you can avoid burnout and find balance to spend more time with your family (or doing whatever is most important to you!) while maintaining your business.
So I started asking,what is burnout to you, how are you defining that, and what does it look like?
And it was everything from not having enough energy to not balancing priorities, and having the business take way too much time based on what he wanted to provide to the business. And that was robbing him of time. That he was not able to spend time with his family and his young kids.
He said, I don’t know what to do. And, and I it’s simple, but it’s hard. What’s simple is that your priorities have to remain your priorities. So the things that are most important to you have to be the most important to you. And if they are most important to you, then they have to get ordered. They have to get scheduled. They have to be part of an off-the-job routine and rhythm.
A lot of people don’t have that.
A lot of people allow life to happen after businesses are over, and the business is not as productive as it could be or should be. And, and so I was talking with this guy and, and I said, I learned a really important lesson early on. The lesson was this:
If I don’t put boundaries on my business, I’m not going to have balance in my life. It’s that straightforward.
When we really think about that, we have to think about this idea of “What are you tolerating that you shouldn’t tolerate?”
What should be unacceptable that you haven’t decided is unacceptable yet? Where can you say no to things that don’t matter and to people who don’t matter or who are robbing you of your joy and your happiness? What can you do to begin to put walls up and boundaries up so that you can have, a little bit different balance between life and work.
And it’s never permanent. You know, the whole idea of achieving balance is a little bit overrated, and it’s a little bit unattainable, actually.
If you want to stay balanced, you have to keep moving.
You have to keep asking, “What are my priorities? Where do I need to adjust? Where do I need to make in-flight corrections? And how do I make the priority and keep the priority a priority?”
The way that I have found to do it best is, first, to be really clear on your why. Be very clear on your purpose. If my purpose is to make a difference, then I have to be able to orient the things in my life that equip me to make a difference, my personal health, my personal mental wellness, right? My, my relationship with my wife, and then with my family. I have to be able to do those things well in order to have the space to not feel guilt and shame when I’m at work.
Sadly, we often let work control us instead of us controlling it. I’ve been studying time management for 30 years, and I can tell you with absolute authority that about 99% of people in business are not optimizing their time. Sadly, what gets sacrificed ends up being the things that matter most.
You can’t recreate a balancing act in a day. You could go 30 days without paying attention to getting home on time. And then you decide on the 31st day to get home on time. Well, that doesn’t wipe out the 30 days you weren’t home on time.
Then pretty soon we make promises so long that we don’t keep that the promises are never even really honored anyway, and they’re not even thought of by the recipient as a promise because you have evidence of that. So this is a new muscle. It’s a new habit. And I think a lot of people need to understand that in life, if it doesn’t get scheduled, it doesn’t get done. If it’s not super important to you, then you’re going to fill that time with other stuff.
So we have to make the things that matter most matter most. And we have to understand that the longer a priority goes unattended, the more of a priority it becomes. And if you do that over a long period of time, it can kill elements of your life. It can kill a marriage. It can kill a relationship with your kids. It can kill your health because of stress and cancer and hypertension and all that kind of stuff.
So here’s what I learned. I learned that the best way to order your business is to first define your life. What does the morning look like? And what are the habits you’re formulating in the morning before work starts? Okay? And then during the day, what are the absolute priorities? And there should be no more than three things that you do for about 80% of the time. And if you’re in mortgage or real estate, it’s working with clients, it’s working with a team, and it’s managing expectations, customer service experience, those types of things.
Then you need to understand that there’s a time to go home, okay? There’s a time to be done.
If you know there’s a time to be done, then you should, by default, be more effective during the day instead of moving down the road and just getting home later and later and later. And it’s a new muscle. But I will tell you, Zig Ziglar taught me this. He said, “Isn’t it amazing how much you get done before you go on vacation?” Like the days leading up to vacation, how much you get done.
And he asked a question of this audience. He says, so what’s more important? Vacation or your life? And everybody said, your life? And he said, so why don’t you treat every day as like at five o’clock I start my vacation for the night. I’m going to get everything done during the day because the night is what I enjoy doing and being, and that’s part of what I need in my life to be equipped and to feel joyful and to feel healthy emotionally.
And if I’m healthy, emotionally, I get dopamine, and serotonin, and oxytocin, and endorphins and, and life comes alive. But if I’m getting slate every day because I’m saying yes to things I shouldn’t say yes to, I’m tolerating things I shouldn’t tolerate, and I’m allowing people to encroach upon the most precious gift I have, which is my time, then it is your fault and you need to do something about it.
I want you to know we’re never done balancing. We’re always going to be balancing anything. There’s always going to be seasons. There’s always going to be surprises. But at the end of the day, you’re in charge of what you say yes to on what you say no to. And so let’s just do this. Let’s say yes to what matters most, let’s say no to the things that encroach upon that. Let’s be okay with losing a little to gain a lot.
And if we do that, we’re going to be happier, we’re going to be healthier, we’re going to be wealthier. There’s no downside to following the formula I just laid down for you. Okay? So keep the priorities the priorities.
If you need help creating this balance, this is one of the most common aspects of life and business we help our coaching members with. See if coaching is right for you with a free, 30 minute coaching consultation. Learn more here.