One Saturday afternoon, I took a break and reached out to friends I had not been in touch with for a long time. During one conversation, I questioned a friend who seemed to have it all together.
“How do you accomplish everything you do as a mother, wife, community volunteer, and employee with a full-time, demanding job and still find time to exercise, eat healthy, and take time for personal growth?”
Her answer was simple.
“I work to balance my priorities, but it’s not easy.”
My friend’s response confirmed what I had learned over the years: successful personal growth flows from intentional living. Effective individuals schedule time for development because they live with vision and purpose.
Living with vision and purpose requires us to balance our busy daily lives with our personal development goals.
I’ve found the following strategies helpful in learning to live a balanced life while making time for personal growth:
- Identify areas of your life to target for growth that will help you become the person you want to be.
- Schedule 15 minutes every day to learn. Read, watch challenging videos, listen to podcasts or audio books, or seek mentoring.
- Schedule time slots each week to do things that inspire you, fulfill you, or help you meet a goal, even if it is small steps.
- Become comfortable with the realities of balance. Various seasons of life will require you to focus on one area more than another, depending upon needs and circumstances.
- Be realistic. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Your work will always be there. It’s okay to occasionally leave items unchecked on your to-do list.
- Set firm boundaries around your availability. Notify colleagues, clients, and family of your schedule. Explain that setting boundaries makes it possible for you to be 100% there for them when you are “on the clock” with them.
- Take technology breaks. This allows you to be focused and productive and releases you from the tyranny of notifications and calls.
- Schedule brain-intensive tasks during your most productive hours, and complete low-energy jobs during your ‘slower’ times of the day.
- Delegate tasks and consider paying someone to do house cleaning, yard work, or errands.
- Last, but definitely not least in priority, schedule important family and personal activities such as regular vacations. Then, treat them as top priorities because they are. Enjoy your family, relax in the sun, hike, and tour your favorite locale—whatever energizes you, renews your soul, and draws you closer to those you love.
Now, what about you? How do you balance personal development, professional life, and family priorities? I’d love to hear your ideas.
Peace and Health,