circusIf you have been to a circus, you must have watched the heart-stopping, breath-holding tight-rope balancing act. It is not an easy feat. It requires intent focus, stamina, and a keen sense of balance because the life or death of the acrobat depends on the perfect execution of the act. However, once he reaches his goal at the end of the line, the acrobat breaths the exhilarating feeling of accomplishment and success.

Are you aware that you, too, have to do the same tight-rope balancing act everyday because your future and your can life depend on it? Although you do not have to do it up on the air but on solid ground, you may also end up dead, virtually that is, if you are not careful.

I am referring to the equally challenging act of balancing the work/life aspect of your life. Just like the tight-rope act, maintaining the perfect equilibrium between your personal and professional life is vital if you will have a happy and successful life. The act requires your focus, energy, and clear deliberations at all times.

Here are some tips on how you can successfully reach your goal in life at the end of your balancing act:

Balance your attitude

circus1You may be among those who fluctuate between 2 extremes in your attitude in life. You may be a workaholic, too accomplishment-driven, and get your adrenaline rush by working non-stop. Admittedly, these are great factors in reaching your goal fast — if you ever get there alive. With your extreme pace in doing things, the probability of being overtaken by physical and mental burnouts is so great that they are actually expected to happen. How would you enjoy your success being pushed around in a wheelchair or being fed intravenously in bed?

At the other extreme of the balance is being too fun-loving. You feel you need to unwind and bond with your family and friends at the end of your 2-hour 3-day workweek schedule. You must be constantly connected 24/7 to the world or you are missing out. Sure, you have lots of funs and friends but not for long. Your continued unproductiveness will surely catch up on you.  Who would like to bond with a penniless bum?

Be a juggler to maintain your work/life balance 

Tcircuso keep a healthy balance between your professional and personal life, you must know how to juggle or schedule your time effectively. Segregate your working and non-working activities into separate groups. Apportion enough time for each group and, as much as possible, avoid mixing them up. When your schedule for work ends, drop everything you are doing and prepare yourself to relax and attend to your family and social life. The same is true when your time for relaxing is up. Withdraw promptly from your personal activities and attend to your tasks.

Keep a regular schedule so your family and friends are aware of the time you are available for them so they will not distract to unnecessarily. Your co-workers should be advised similarly so they do not bother you with business concerns during your personal time.

An effective “to-do” list is an excellent tool to keep you organized and balanced. Make sure you list down the tasks, personal and professional, based on their importance and relevance to your life.

Be a miser of time

circusHaving to satisfy equally both your personal and professional responsibilities, you need time. Otherwise, you will have to sacrifice either one of them to be able to meet their demands and make your life’s balance lopsided. In order to gain the time you need, you must be a master of time-management techniques. You may find the following suggestions helpful:

  • Learn to put your foot down

Learn to decline people.  Say “no” if what is asked of you infringes inconsiderately to your priorities. Trying to extend a helping hand is a noble act but you should put a limit to your generosity. Always consider seriously every request that comes your way and see it does not upset your own schedule before you accept any of it. It is wiser to turn people down at the start than to disappoint them later due to conflicts in your schedule. This is true not only on business matters but also with social commitments. Turn down invitations that may stress you too much for you to enjoy and waste your time.

  • Try to be a minimalist

Simplify your life by getting rid of things, or people, that clutter your life and waste your time such as:

  • Calendars: Keep only one useful calendar where you can write down notes and reminders. There are those that keep calendars in every room so that they do not forget things.  Unfortunately, they do just the opposite.  Having too many calendars around means you have to update each one every day. In case you forget to write a reminder in one of them, you may miss it altogether if you happen to consult that calendar where you missed to note on it. Having only one “official” calendar to consult, you save time updating every calendar and missing reminders is remote.
  • Knick-knacks on your worktable. Keep your desk neat and organized with the minimum useful gadgets on it. On your desk, you only need your computer, a telephone unit, a paper stapler with stapler remover, a pencil rack with 3 sharpened pencils and a multi-coloured marker, and a desk calendar. Keep the rest inside your drawer in case you will need them.
  • Check your medicine cabinet. Get rid of near-expiry or expired medications. Not only are they dangerous, they also occupy space unnecessarily.
  • Be selective with your wardrobe. Get rid of those you seldom use or are outmoded. Keep a handful of those that match with each other. Fewer choices means lesser time wasted deciding. It is the personality that carries the clothes, not the other way round.
  • In general, anything you have not used or touched for a year, you do not really need.  Sell them or give them away to charity.

Keep the lines of communication open

circus1Communication is vital in keeping your life balanced. Learn how to express yourself clearly and to listen effectively. So many lives and relationships are ruined due to miscommunications. Make sure those people closest to you know what’s going on in your life. Do not alienate them, especially your family. Make up for lost time with them. Make them allies in attaining your goals. They should be the centre of your personal life.

On the other hand, you should also ensure that your professional life remain stable, or even flourishing. Constant communication with your associates should be established to keep you abreast of all developments and make immediate business decisions when necessary.

Assess yourself

circusYou should monitor your progress towards your goal of keeping a healthy work/life balance. Examine your day-to-day activities if you are giving sufficient time to each aspect of your life. In case you find yourself leaning more towards one side, make the necessary modifications and adjustments in your schedule.

A regular monitoring will prevent you from being too engrossed.  You can catch and correct in time any loss of equilibrium in your life that may cause you to slide back to your old, imbalanced self.

It is not easy to balance the personal and professional aspects of your life. However, if your life’s success depends on it, you must be like the acrobat who must develop a keen sense of equilibrium and determination to keep a happy and balanced life.