The Myth of Work/Life Balance

Work/Life balance is a myth. I know, you don’t want to hear that, but it’s the truth. The myth of work/life balance is based on the lie/premise that you can control either. And the truth is that you can’t. The real secret is:

**turns head to see who’s watching**

HEALTHY BOUNDARIES

Healthy boundaries are vital to living a complete, fulfilling life. What does that look like? Well, I’m no expert, but I spent a lot of time studying to find that exact answer. For me, practicing healthy boundaries looks like flexibility, self-advocacy, knowing when to say no, asking for help when needed, not feeling guilty for making certain things a priority in your life….and I could go on forever. But the root of healthy boundaries, for me anyway, can be summed up in one compound word: self-awareness.

Do you know your triggers? your limits? your strengths? your areas of growth? your likes/dislikes? Do you know the why behind your likes & dislikes? Do you understand why you continue to react to certain situations in the same way? All of this, and more, constitutes self-awareness. And the path towards self-awareness looks different for everybody. One day, I’ll share my full journey with you, but for now I’ll just share the lessons I’ve learned along the way.

  1. The more self-awareness you have, the better leader you are. How can you ask people to follow you if you don’t even know who they are following?
  2. You cannot change what you are not willing to acknowledge. None of us are perfect, and we will never be. We all have areas where we can grow & improve. But that growth cannot happen if you/we refuse to acknowledge that it is needed.
  3. Everything is a decision, including doing nothing at all. And every decision has a consequence, whether positive or negative. That is true for all parts of life, including personal growth.
  4. Understanding how certain situations can act as a trigger for me allows me to be able to respond and not react. That is where my “super power” lies in how I handle situations in all aspects of life. Ask yourself “why does ______ usually cause me to ______?” Explore that question and sit with the answer. Talk it through with your therapist or a trusted friend. Do the work to become a better you. You’ll eventually arrive at, “_____ used to cause me to ______, but know I choose to ________ instead.”
  5. Self-awareness is a continual process. You never arrive at a point where you are so self-aware that you no longer need to do the work. You are always changing, growing and evolving into a new person (or at least you should be). Therefore, you must continue to work the process.

I encourage each of you to focus the next phase of your leadership journey on learning & understanding yourself. I guarantee you it will be the best investment that you will ever make!!

Until next time….

~Ashley

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