As you already know, there are only so many hours in the day, and therefore we can only achieve so much in any given day. Much of our pain and disappointment comes from feeling that we haven’t achieved everything we wanted to achieve during the day. To put it another way, we work like hell at one thing and then, come the end of the day, we realise that we’ve neglected a lot of other things we also consider important.
Recognising this is an important step towards achieving the balance we crave so much of in our lives. Here are the 5 steps you need to take right now to restore order and balance in your life.
1. Write down your Roles
Focus on your roles. Write a list of up to 7 of the main roles that you behave in during your days. For instance, I define my roles as: Family Member; Entrepreneur; Home Manager; Community Citizen; and Friend. I’ve also added the role of Boyfriend in there too, even though I’m currently single. Feel free to invent future roles for yourself, that you want to fulfil. This will help you to focus on things you can be doing now to work towards becoming that person.
My role as Family Member began as Father, Son, and Brother roles, which I now pack into one box for simplicity. You can choose to do the same if you like, or leave them separate. Your job may encapsulate several roles: one in administration, one in marketing, one in personnel.
By identifying your roles, you are now on your way to defining how you can make best use of your time, so that all of the important things get accounted for.
2. Add Finance and Personal Development Roles
When you have your list of up to 7, add to that the roles of “Financial” and “Personal Development”. Your Financial role is taking good care of your money and making sure you are planning where your money flows.
Your Personal Development role is everything you do become a better person: physically, mentally, socially/emotionally, and spiritually.
Your role of Personal Development is where you get to increase your ability to function in a physical, mental, social/emotional, and spiritual capacity. Increasing your power in this role automatically increases your power in ALL other roles. Read that again, until you get it!
Okay, now in the same way, each of your roles has a direct or indirect impact on every other role. The actions you take in one role cannot help but influence all the other roles. But here’s where the magic happens and why I really wanted to stress to you the importance of knowing your roles…
Imagine, if you will, that you want to be a great mum, a fantastic girlfriend/wife, and you crave to get fit again and feel youthful and have fun. The old you might have seen that wish-list and thought “Oh no! I’ll never be able to do something to satisfy all of those goals in one day! Maybe I’ll just focus one and do another tomorrow!” Sound like the unbalanced life you’ve been struggling with? I know I used to be like that most of the time.
Now, suppose that you now understand all the roles in your life and how important your goals are for each of the roles, and you have a clear vision of how you want your life to be from this point on. You want to be a great mum, a fantastic girlfriend/wife, and you crave to get fit again and feel youthful and have fun? How would you feel if you and your partner took your little man to the swimming baths for an hour, splashing about in the pool? Maybe you can teach him to swim and have him swim from you to your partner and back again? How would that make you feel? Imagine it!
This is the power of synergy and how you can make the most effective use of your time to achieve goals for each role, including many at the same time.
3. Decide What is of Ultimate Importance
This stage involves finding out what is important to you in each area of your life. Consider firstly your values for each role, and then consider your ultimate aspirations.
Your values are determined by asking yourself the following questions for each of your roles:
- What’s important to me?
- What truly motivates me?
- What has to be true for me?
When you have answered these questions, you will have a set of criteria around each role. Criteria are the reasons you do something and what you get out of it. These criteria carry a certain weight in relation to each other, and so you should be able to form a hierarchy.
Find out your criteria hierarchy by taking each value in turn from your list and comparing it to the next value in the list. Imagine that you could only have a box of one instead of the other. Which would you choose? This one gets bumped up your list. Do this with each value in turn until you arrive at what feels right to you.
You then have a list of your criteria for each role in your life, in order of how much you value them.
To determine your ultimate aspirations, you might like to perform the following exercise for each one of your roles:
- Choose the person (or imagined person) that benefits most from your role (i.e. choose your son or daughter for your mother role)
- Imagine that person making a speech at your wake (an elegy, if you like) and imagine the qualities that you would like them to remember you for
- Write down the qualities that come to mind
These are the qualities of character and the achievements that are most important to you for that role.
4. Write Down Your Goals
Goal-writing is an ongoing exercise and one that you will get better and better at over time with practice. As there is so much to consider when writing down your goals, I just
want to touch on it briefly to introduce you to the process.
For each of your roles, consider your long-term objectives and use the criteria and aspirations from the previous exercise to guide you. Write down as many things you want to achieve over a long-term as you can think of.
For each long-term objective, write underneath it the reason why this is important to you. Also write down what it would mean to you if you did not achieve the objective. Write down how this would make you feel.
Then decide on the kind of person you would need to be in order to succeed in your objectives, and what kind of activities you would need to be taking part in. Write these down as mid-term goals. You now have an idea of the direction you need to steer your life in to achieve the long-term aspirations you hold.
Knowing this will help you make the best decisions when faced with many choices throughout your life.
Next, write a list of all the things you MUST be doing in the short-term in order to become that person, and to carry out those mid-term activities.
5. Take Action
This step requires little explanation. For each short-term goal, decide on the very first step you need to take. Either carry it out there and then (preferably) or else schedule a timescale of when you want to complete it-and then do it!
Planning without action is simply a piece of paper with words on it.
Darren Chambers, “Coach Daz”, is a publisher and coach who specializes in helping moms to get organized and motivated so they can work from home, spend more time with their kids and achieve perfect balance in all their roles. To download your FREE guide, which has helped thousands of busy moms, just like you, learn how to balance their roles and find more time in the day, visit:
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