I recently came across an article on Entrepreneur about work life balance and the ways we think we can achieve it. Interestingly, instead of presenting the steps of the process
the author quickly made it clear that he believes the idea of work life balance as we understand it is a complete and elaborate myth. And after reading his reasoning, I agree with him.
The idea of work life balance–being mindful every moment, setting clear boundaries for work, taking scheduled breaks–is not a natural way of life for an entrepreneur, and it doesn’t solve the problem at the heart of our inability to juggle work with family and personal responsibilities.
What is at the heart of it, anyway?
In a word, stress. We can’t decide if we’re successful enough, if we’re on the right track toward success, or if we’re already in the process of failing. It causes stress and anxiety, and so being ambitious entrepreneurs, we overwork. We have a knack for that.
But here’s the important thing: The tension, stress, and anxiety we feel ‘about’ work is not really about work. It’s more about our under or poorly defined goals and pursuit of success.
How can we fix the problem?
How can we fix the underlying problem and find true peace with our lives? We must first understand that we are simply stressed out because we desperately want success but don’t know where we will end up.
If we focus on defining clearer goals we want to reach in pursuit of success, we have a clearer path to follow and can alleviate the anxiety of simply not knowing where we stand.
Jennifer Wang, productivity expert, mentions examples of specific goals entrepreneurs might set in a pursuit of peace and balance:
“Maybe your starting goal is to be profitable and have the freedom to pause meeting and prioritize lunch with a friend or family member. Or your business plan charts a path for a multimillion-dollar company that bakes in time for employees to surf whenever the waves are good.”
Creating better balance
The concept we’ve been calling work life balance just doesn’t exist. However, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to create better balance in your life as an entrepreneur. Just focus on what’s important to you, make plans to reach your goals, and learn to work smarter instead of harder. Life isn’t for toiling away–it’s for living and enjoying. Use your creativity to create your ideal life!
We think work life balance is a myth. Do you agree or disagree? Do you think finding true balance has to start much deeper than work? Let us know in the comments!