Written by Sue Fuller-Good (MSc Physio WITS) Physiotherapist with a special interest in the mind-body connection
The sweet spot between driving hard and being kind to yourself.
Work-life balance: what is work-life balance?
It’s the perfect space where you have enough time and space for everything that feels important to you while still accomplishing everything you wish to at work. Work life balance is the place of harmony and calm where you don’t have to rush and stress, but can gently get everything you need to done and still have time for life’s pleasures and for fun. Work-life balance is the space in which you feel you have enough time for family, for friends, for exercise and for managing your home and your finances.
The sweet spot is the place of perfect balance… not too much of anything and not too little either.
I subdivided my property and for a whole year, there was a building project going on right in my front garden. I watched the project unfolding and was struck by the builders’ attitudes, clearly visible to me as I couldn’t help observing them. They lived on the property and worked 6 days a week. They were remarkably easy to coexist with, being relatively quiet and as undisruptive as a group of men could be.
There was always endless chatter and lots of laughter and I sawed their incredible teamwork as they handed bricks down a line or dug trenches or whatever the task was on a particular day. The job progressed well. I can honestly say, however that it wasn’t done the way I would have done it. The men enjoyed what seemed like a great balance between pushing forward and taking time off. They put in long hours, but took rests regularly during the day. They make time to stand and chat and they take time to stop and stare. I was deeply inspired by them. They seemed to have found this place of balance. Pushing hard enough and not too hard.
I love this quote by Zig Ziglar: “There’s no elevator to success, you have to take the stairs”. I feel like there could be another part to this wisdom. “You don’t have to sprint up the stairs to success, just keep stepping at a sustainable pace”. This is true, for whatever you are trying to succeed at. Be it: get fit, build a business, recover from a disaster, or eat a little better. Sometimes more success is achieved by taking your foot off the gas and going slower and sometimes some acceleration is what’s needed. The balance is the critical factor.
I have just finished writing my book, called: “Vooma in The Sweet Spot. A deep dive into the magic of balance”. As I wrote, I tested it over and over again and found the same thing: the place in the middle of the two extremes is where the best results are found. Sometimes its counterintuitive and it’s easy to think that more is better, but in reality, balance is best.
This is a specific part of balance seeking. The part that includes finding just the right amount of drive forward and just the right amount of gratitude for and enjoyment of where you are. My invitation to you as we move another step into 2022, is seek the sweet spot. Take some inspiration from the builders I watched and see if you can find the perfect pace, the less strain pace, the more joy pace and see if you can do it with compassion for yourself. When you do, that compassion will flow to all around you and will be the healing balm we all need right now.
I wish you a gentle week, with plenty of laughter and kindness peppering every hour.