After interviewing 4126 men and following their career, Dr. Jan Halper concluded that many men sacrificed their personal lives and personal values for their careers and companies, but it did not give them self-esteem, confidence, or even a freedom from the tough times.
Indeed, Halper writes, “By sacrificing their values for status, placing more importance on appearances than happiness, and spending more time in empty or false relationships, these men found themselves saying, “I feel empty. I’m an impostor!”
I believe the same thing could be said about a lot of women as well. Work-life balance is more of a myth than a reality.
So what’s the answer? Michelle Obama offers part of the solution. She says, “We need to do a better job of putting ourselves higher on our own ‘to do’ list.”
Dolly Parton goes a bit further. She says, “Never get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.”
Read on. I’ve got several tips that will give you a lot more work-life balance including my first ever Blacktober Friday special.
► 1. Ignore the small stuff.
You’ve only got so much energy. Spend it wisely.
And some things just aren’t worth your time and energy.
Maybe your coworker refuses to greet you in the morning. Maybe a customer uses a sharp tone of voice. Or maybe your spouse occasionally forgets to carry out an errand. Well, so what? Is it worth stewing about, talking about, and getting overly upset about?
Get smart. Don’t spend $10.00 worth of energy on a 10-cent problem. Learn to spend 10 cents worth of energy on a 10-cent problem and $10.00 worth of energy on a $10.00 problem.
Author Grenville Kleiser wrote, “Do not let trifles disturb your tranquility of mind … life is too precious to be sacrificed for the nonessential and transient … ignore the inconsequential.”
► 2. Use it now.
I’m amazed at all the people who work hard to get some nice things … things that would make their life more pleasant … and then don’t use those things. There’s no better time to use those nice things than when you’re stressed and out of balance … because they’ll lift your spirits.
Ann Wells wrote about that in the Los Angeles Times. She wrote, “My brother-in-law opened the bottom drawer of my sister’s bureau and lifted out a tissue-wrapped package. ‘This’ he said, ‘is not a slip. This is lingerie.’ He discarded the tissue and handed me the slip. It was exquisite: silk, handmade and trimmed with a cobweb of lace. The price tag with an astronomical figure on it was still attached.”
Her brother-in-law continued, “Jan bought this the first time we went to New York, at least eight or nine years ago. She never wore it. She was saving it for a special occasion. Well I guess this is the occasion.”
He took the slip from Ann’s hands and put it on the bed with the other clothes they were taking to the mortician. His hands lingered on the soft material for a moment and then he slammed the drawer shut and turned to his sister-in-law. “Don’t ever save anything for a special occasion. Every day you’re alive is a special occasion.”
What about you? Are you using the special things in your life now? After that experience, Ann Wells is.
I learned this lesson from my Grandpa John. On several occasions when we went to visit, he would pull out a special bottle of wine to share with us. Grandma Em would chide him and say, “John, we were saving that bottle for a special occasion.” But Grandpa would remind her, “Em, what could be more special than spending time with our family?”
Along those same lines of use it now, let me give you my first-ever Blacktober Friday special that you can use now.
Of course you’ve heard of Black Friday that takes place in November right after Thanksgiving with all the special prices and various ways to save money. But what is Blacktober Friday?
Simple. Anyone who books one of my programs between Black Friday October 18th and the end of November will get the program with no travel expenses whatsoever. I’ll eat all those costs to save you money. And I will give you 40 copies of my best-selling book that you can give to your people. In total, it’s a savings of about $2000.
All you have to do is use it now … use this special coupon between October 18th and the end of November. And you can have the program delivered whenever you like.
Another way to ensure a healthier work-life balance is to…
► 3. Find humor in your daily life.
Laughter and stress are incompatible. The more you laugh the less stress you’ll have. Even medical doctors are talking about the stress-killing, endorphin-lifting effect of laughter.
So I urge you to be a humor detective. Look for funny things every day and laugh. I know I do, and it works.
For example, when the economy was so bad a few years ago, I got stressed out, until I read Dr. Ann Week’s perspective. She made the following points.
- “Gas prices are so high that when I pulled into a station and asked for a dollar’s worth, the attendant dabbed some behind my ears.”
- “I have enough money to last me the rest of my life, unless I buy something.”
- “The best things in life may be free, but the optional accessories really run up the bill.”
- “One nice thing about my salary, no one will ever hold me for ransom.”
- “It’s called ‘take-home pay’ because you can’t afford to go anywhere else with it!”
- “The best things in life are free, but never fear. Two thousand tax experts are working overtime on the problem.”
To have more work-life balance, ignore the small stuff, use it now, and find the humor.
Dr. Zimmerman’s Tuesday Tip, Issue 1009 – How To Get The Work-Life Balance You’ve Always Wanted