By Dr. Monique Y. Wells –
The term “work/life balance” has become an integral part of the conversations that we have regarding the stress associated with work and the toll that it takes on our lives. Sometimes, this stress grows to the point of “overwhelm” – the feeling that one or several aspects of work are more than we can handle, both physically and emotionally.
More and more people are coming forward to express the sentiment that work/life balance is a fallacy and that it is actually impossible to achieve. They cite definitions for the word “balance” that refer to “equilbrium” or “equality” and the need to add or subtract from one side of the imaginary scale of life to “even things out.”
However, there is one definition that I have not seen cited in these discussions. It refers to balance as “the power or means to decide.” This definition is in total harmony with the spirit of the term “work/life balance” – at least the way I use it. For me, it means making decisions on a daily basis regarding which elements of work (which, by the way, is a part of life) should be emphasized at what time and when elements of your personal life should take priority.
Hopefully, we enjoy our work and do not consider it to be an inherent burden upon us. Even so, we all experience periods when work becomes overwhelming, occupying more time in our lives than we’d like or than we believe is healthy. It is at this point that we need to exercise work/life balance and make decisions about what we will do (or not do) at work so that we can address the other priorities in our lives.
During the Christmas holiday season we generally feel the urge to reflect upon what we want from our personal lives and what we want from our work. I like to refer to this as “time-out – time-in” because it involves both stepping out of our daily routines and looking inward to reconnect with (and sometimes rediscover) our core values and our personal and professional goals. This can be a poignant process for women entrepreneurs who suffer from overwhelm when we endeavor to deal with our feelings of frustration, lack of control, and even failure, during what is supposed to be the most joyous time of the year.
Getting over overwhelm in your business goes a long way toward achieving work/life balance as described above. It also allows you to enjoy less stress, more income, and greater job satisfaction! Here are 6 steps that you can take to get over “office overwhelm”:
Step 1. Focus/refocus on your business goals. This first step includes acknowledging and remembering who you serve in your business and what you deliver to your market.
Step 2. Critically evaluate the three most important projects that you are working on to see how well they align with your goals, your niche, and your product/service.
Step 3. Evaluate the remaining projects on your list using the same method, and determine whether they should be on your list or not!
Step 4. Identify the steps required to free yourself of those projects that may have “crept onto” your list, despite not being aligned with your current goals.
Step 5. Look at the “good” projects remaining on your list and evaluate them for potential sources of overwhelm.
Step 6. Identify the most important source of overwhelm in your most important projects and create a plan to control or eliminate it.
These are the steps that comprise the 6 Simple Steps to Getting over Overwhelm™ system. With it, you’ll be able to get rid of your particular brand of overwhelm quickly and forever!
Click here if you want to increase your revenue while enjoying a less stressful existence and more free time for your family, friends, and personal projects, and to learn more about the 6 Simple Steps to Getting over Overwhelm™ system.
Invest in yourself and your business by purchasing the e-version of the 6 Simple Steps to Getting over Overwhelm™ system prior to midnight on December 24, 2011 and receive the bonus gift of Monique’s e-book entitled The Best Way to Overcome the Number 1 Cause of Overwhelm among Women Solopreneurs ($37 value)!
Dr. Monique Y. Wells is the Paris Muse of Time Management™. She helps women solopreneurs who work from home “get over overwhelm” so that they can enjoy less stress, more income, greater job satisfaction, and more time to spend with family and friends outside of work – guilt free! Monique owns two small businesses and has over ten years of experience in maximizing productivity within the constraints of the number of hours available for work each day. Find her at http://gettingoveroverwhelm.com/home.