I’ve always been a worker. When I turned 13, I begged my parents to let me get working papers so I could get a job. At the time you had to be 15. My parents agreed. I imagine they were proud to have a daughter with a strong work ethic. I’ve been working ever since. Looking back, I wish I had had the wisdom to know there would be plenty of time to work and that playtime was important too.

There’s nothing wrong with having a desire to work hard and be productive. It’s healthy to do work you enjoy and makes you feel part of something. Life becomes unmanageable (at least for me) when I put work above everything else. And I’m not just talking about my job. Work can mean many things: Job, housekeeping, child-rearing, pet care, caring for aging parents, soccer mom, etc.

Life is like a pie. Each slice represents an area that requires attention. And when one area gets more attention than another, we become unbalanced. Here’s what mine looks like at the time of this writing:

I’m wired to work, and I’ve had 45 years to hone that area of my life! But it’s pushing other areas out of balance right now. Self-care, relationships, fun, and food choices aren’t getting the attention they require.

Here’s how that happened: I’m excited about something I’m working on. Having my assistant Vanessa allows me to be more productive. So that score is high right now. But my relationships are starting to suffer. I’m sitting at the computer for a few more hours after my husband gets home from work rather than spending quality time with him. I’m eating well but added unhealthy carbs because I’m tired (like the two slices of pizza I had last night at 9:30 p.m.). My self-care suffers when I work through the breaks suggested by an app that reminds me every hour to get up instead of sitting all day. And there’s no time left for hobbies like the piece of furniture that’s half-finished and waiting to be completed.

I like to work, but I need to keep things in perspective so that other areas of my life that are important to me don’t deteriorate. Balance is not only required for health, it’s essential.

Do you have areas of your life that are unbalanced? Here’s a blank chart to make a map for yourself. If you struggle with staying balanced and would like some help, please schedule a Free Discovery Session. I’d be happy to share some of my tips with you for getting back on track.

Stay tuned. Coming in September, I’m offering a group program called Let’s Start with You, where you’ll take 30 days just for you to bring your life back in balance!

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