We are all looking for that right? As entrepreneurs the name of the game is hustle. We hustle all day and night to achieve the “American Dream” of owning our own business. It is a labor of love. Being a business owner is work. The problem is we are taught that hard work – physical action – is what will pay off. That struggle is an essential part of the process and being stretched too thin is inevitable.
The problem is the ones who are pushing that have two things wrong. One, they are not talking about the inside work. The pre-paving if you will. Imagine driving down a road that is filled with trees and rocks and all sorts of things to slow down your journey. That path would take a lot longer than if you drove down one that was pre-paved. It’s smooth and even though there may be a rock or two along the way the major issues are fixed. That is what lining up energy does for any undertaking.
The second thing they miss is that when energy is aligned you begin to get inspiration and that inspiration, when followed leads to big results. I could write a whole book on that and sort of am (so be on the look out). Inspired action has largely been the reason for my success over the years. Moving when I felt the need to move.
Yet even working in the flow causes a problem for the ever elusive work/life balance. Because the flow is directed from the inside, if you will and work/life balance, the way it is presented current day is a structure to be held to from the outside. I hear coaches and other gurus say they have the cure, they can tell you how to achieve it and I am here to call bullshit. As an entrepreneur there is a very slim change you ever really achieve work/life balance and….that’s okay.
Let’s breakdown work/life balance to really take a good look at it because understanding what you want, not just trying to do what other people are “saying” they have is important. So what would work/life balance really look like? Maybe if you are a 9-5 worker who comes home and completely turns off….maybe you have a shot at what most mean when they say work/life balance. You wake up, go to work, leave at 5, come home, spend the evening relaxing or do whatever you want to do, then wake up and do it again. Weekends are made for relaxing and hanging out. You may actually have (daily) work/life balance.
That’s what they mean by the term “work/life balance”. It’s a daily thing right? It’s about putting ‘standards’ and rules in place to ensure you get your work done and show up for life too. But what if that term was just another way you are using to torture yourself with by comparing yourself to someone else who may or may not even be living the life you think you want?
I realized that the only balance there really is, is energetic balance. That balance is what you actually need. And you cannot get it by working x number of hours and then doing “life” x number of hours in perfect harmony. You get it by following your bliss. You get it by taking inspired action. And inspired action doesn’t always fall into a pretty little box. Every get an inspiration to call someone and it was just the best conversation ever? Right. Well what about when you call someone because you “should” or worse, you ‘have to”. Those conversations may not go as well or may be less in the flow.
What I’m getting at here is that life/work balance is more about the energetic dance you do vs the action you take. We keep trying to fit work/life balance into this daily formula. As entrepreneurs especially we try to set these boundaries to force us to look up from the project or client or launch we are in the middle of to prove we are decent human beings and we do care about others. But if we listen closely and remove the judgement and guilt and shame and “shoulds” we could feel the natural flow. And I hate to tell you it may not look like what everyone else is doing. Because as a society we have been told that “this” is what’s good and “that” is what is bad. So we try to fit into those grooves.
When you step back and realize this whole life thing is a journey. This is not about today or what happened yesterday. We get to choose and the journey is long and never a straight line. So what if you stopped trying to create work/life balance and instead started to FEEL for the flow of life? Did you know that you would actually get more done in way less time if you moved when you were inspired.
What happens though is that we are in the middle of a movie with family and it has to be “family” time so we ignore the impulse. And listen, I was an all-in Mom so I completely get it. I am not saying to not have standards or to ignore people in your life. I’m saying, show up when you feel it. Do the work to get to that point so that when you show up you are present and at your best. And then get in the flow and follow the inspiration and be present and at your best there.
Stop trying to fit into all their fucking boxes. Create your own boxes and find the flow and harmony in that. There is no one right formula to make your life “balance” from the outside in. What if instead you become a passion-a-holic? And inspiration-a-holic. Someone who is so obsessed with being in the flow that you follow that.
Because here’s the thing, you will be the best for others when you are in that space. You will grow your business or make the connections faster when you are in that space. That space is where all the magic hangs out. When I was growing my real estate business to six figures in just months I did it with inspired action and still made it to every football game my son played at college in a different city. The secret key? Flow. Alignment. Inspired action.
There is this saying that I heard on several occasions from Abraham-Hicks. One person aligned is more powerful than a million that aren’t. Stop trying to fix your life and instead look for the flow. Under commit so you leave time for the flow. In order to do that, you have to release obligation, which is, by the way, my least favorite thing. To feel obligated makes me want to throw up and revolt against the powers that be, whomever that is.
Take inventory. What are you doing in your life right now out of obligation? It is almost impossible to any alignment, flow or balance when you are working out of obligation. Let other people off the hook and let yourself off the hook too (you do have to do both in order for this to work). Because when you release the obligation you allow in more space for inspiration to find you.