Work life balance, do you exist?
Every now and then I think “I’ve got this whole work life balance thing nailed” then end of quarter rolls around and... poof it’s out the window. Am I mistaking work life balance for a naturally slower workflow in the cycle that is bookkeeping? This thought led me to writing this article, here are my reflections on whether a work life balance actually exists…
How do you know when you have it?
I reckon you would be walking around with a medal on your chest that reads “I achieved work life balance”. Okay, okay, not really. Sometimes it feels like this because the goal is so distant and pretty outrageous after spending hours to meet a big deadline. I guess we need to give ourselves metaphorical medals for achieving the small things, like not checking emails after 5pm or switching off the laptop to indulge in family time. I see work life balance as having the flexibility to do what you want, when you want, while still meeting work obligations. Perhaps that’s why in the midst of end of quarter it seems so unattainable. I’ve reached the conclusion that my totally to-be-expected busy periods, don’t diminish the dream.
Ah-ha, so it comes and goes?
Naturally - yes, there is always going to be a pressure cooker situation where tasks must be completed by a deadline. The key is not to let these moments own you. My Husband preaches the 5P’s “Prior Preparation Prevents Piss-poor Performance” (yeah, who knew “Piss-poor” was a word- you’ll remember it though right?). Thanks to him, I’m continually reminded to prepare myself practically and mentally for these busy times. It means I don’t through in the towel when the pressure cooker is switched to ‘on’ and I feel like life is all work. Instead I simply anticipate the busy schedule and remember there is a light at end of the tunnel – and oh man, is the feeling SO much sweeter when I get there.
What’s this ‘Cloud’ thing? Will I need my umbrella?
Put that umbrella away! Here’s a huge shout-out to your greatest asset when it comes to the work life balance. I believe that moving to the cloud can help you achieve something extraordinary- flexibility. Having the flexibility to work anytime anywhere, around what matters most to you. As a business owner you never really stop working, you always have to be “on deck”. Thanks to the cloud I’ll be “on deck” from a beach in Fiji later this year.
Knowing I have balance keeps me sane! I choose to work to live, not the other way around. My time is my most valuable asset and I love nothing more than spending time with my family and friends. My biggest reflection is not to punish yourself for working until 11pm when the deadline’s due. Instead recognise the freedom of choice you have to schedule your work flow and be the master of your own time. Celebrate the wins and congratulate yourself for the times you work those extra hours to get the best results for clients.