Setting Priorities: Design Your Personal and Professional Balance in Your Life
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In today’s episode, the topic we discuss is how to set priorities so you can design balance for your personal and professional life. Are you running around crazy today? I used to tell my coworkers it felt like I was Kramer from Seinfeld because I was always running around. I used to feel like this all the time, luckily I’ve discovered how to prevent this most days, and I want to share it with you.
Many clients I work with want to achieve a sense of balance between their personal and professional lives. I’m here to tell you that I don’t believe a 50/50 balance is realistic. It’s all about finding a balance that works for you, and it all begins with your priorities.
Topics in this episode
- Why setting priorities is important
- How our successes make us busy
- Recognizing when you are spreading yourself thin
- Zone of genius
- Everything is not equal
- Why we keep saying yes
Hello hello hello – how are you all doing today?
What are you doing?
Like really – are you running around crazy today – like a chicken with your head cut oﬀ?
I remember I used to always feel like that.
lol.. I used to tell my coworker I sometimes felt like I was Kramer – you know – from Seinfeld – b/c I was alway running
So I get it.
But what I want to suggest is – it doesn’t always have to be like that.
A lot of the clients I work with want to achieve a sense of balance
Now listen – when I say balance I don’t mean 50/50 between your personal and professional life.
I don’t believe that is real life.
I mean a balance that works for you.
But the question becomes – what would that look like for you?
I think we are so busy with everything being thrown at us everyday that we don’t even take the time to ﬁgure out what balance WOULD look like.
So we need to ﬁrst take some time to consider and set your priorities – you need to know what is important to you in order to know how you will design your balance.
Sometimes I hear women say they feel stuck in their lives and when begin working together – and it makes total sense.
They are overwhelmed in a world of information and everything seems so important.
I know this happens to many of you – not just the women I talk to – and that’s why I think its so important to discuss.
And – here’s the thing.
You are super successful in your professional life.
In fact – it’s sometimes the success that leads to all of this – it’s like it happens in phases.
You have to be careful because you start out with a goal and you are successful.
And then – because you are successful you start to be the “go to” person – so you have more opportunities
But now you have all these diﬀerent options and everything demands your time and energy and that’s when you start to spread yourself thinner and thinner.
lol.. I used to use that as one of my answers as I interviewed – you know that question – what would you say is your area of improvement – lol – I gave the old
I spread myself too thin
Aka – I do everything –
I used to think that was the positive negative answer
But now I think it’s the negative negative because if you are doing everything you don’t really know what your zone of genius is right?
So, in order to have balance in your personal and professional life you want to know what your priorities are
And keep reminding yourself of these.
The thing is – having a purpose – without a priority – is powerless.
You need to know what
– and why
– it matters.
As adults we get overbooked, overextended, and overcommitted.
Most of the time we think everything must be equal.
This sets up unrealistic expectations and increase in stress levels.
So if we know what matters most, we don’t let the things that don’t matter as much take over.
Everything is not urgent, and important and equal.
In the book Essentialism, by Greg McKeown he used the story of Charlie O. Simms who taught Journalism in a Beverly Hills High School.
He wanted to teach the concept of a “lead”.
He explained the lead contains the why, what when and who of the piece.
It covers the essential information.
Ok – so I’m going to tell you the story he told the kids and I want you to think about what the lead would be –
Here we go – listen up class…
“Kenneth L. Peters, the principal of Beverly Hills High School, announced today that the entire high school faculty will travel to Sacramento next Thursday for a seminar in new
teaching methods. Among the speakers will be anthropologist Margaret Mead, college president Dr. Robert Maynard Hutchins, and California governor Edmund “Pat” Brown.”
Ok – this is now your part –
What would you use for the lead based on these facts?
The answer is –
“There will be no school Thursday”
Did you get that correct?
Or – were you like me trying to think about all of the information?
It’s ﬁnding out what the point is.
So often we get lost in the weeds, losing sight of what we need to do to be productive because we are busy being busy.
When we are busy being busy we think “I have to” do all of this.
We think it’s all important – and we keep saying yes.
We know we will always ﬁgure out how to ﬁt it all in.
So we run around reacting to what’s most pressing – but that simply means its he thing that needs quick or immediate action – not necessarily the most important thing
I remember when I was in this mindset I would say yes to people without really even thinking.
Now – I love saying yes to new opportunities.
But when I do it now I say yes because it will help me achieve a speciﬁc goal.
Not just because I think the other person wants me to.
Which is what I sued to always do.
But then you have all of these things going on – and it usually means things are executed at the last minute.
Think about it – if everything is done based on urgency it’s almost like everything just waits until the last minute – until it is urgent.
But when we do this it feels like we are so out of control
– I mean it’s all getting done based on urgency.
And that feels terrible to a gal who likes to be in control of everything
It becomes so overwhelming when we just keep taking things on and sometimes – we don’t even know if we are doing the right things.
Ok – I have some good news
There is an alternative my friend.
First – I encourage you to recognize you “choose” to do everything in your life.
That’s when you have the power.
Because if you are the one choosing you start to see that – only a few things really matter.
You start taking into consideration what the trade-oﬀs are.
You actually take a pause to consider what really matters
And then – you say no to everything except the essential
I’m going to repeat that – you say no to everything except the essential.
That is soooo not what we are used to doing right?
It can be a challenge to begin but let me tell you
You know what happens when you start saying no?
You are able to remove the obstacles – and that makes your execution easier.
AND – it makes your execution so much more eﬃcient because – since you have been choosing carefully in order to do excellent work you get the right things done.
And that feels like you are so much more in control of all of it.
That my friend, feels so much better as you go though all of your goals.
But again – it starts with setting your priorities.
So what are the top 3 priorities in your life?
Really – do yourself a favor – don’t just listen and passively take this content in.
After you stop driving – write down what your top 3 priorities are.
And then ask yourself
why you listed those 3?
Why do they matter?
Now here’s something I want to warn you of
This all looks great on paper but when the day begins to happen to us it is easy to forget.
So I would encourage you to write down someplace where you can easily see the reminder – maybe your phone – why they matter.
When you start doing this work you get to design your life – its not everyone around you doing the designing.
Listen – if you don’t start prioritizing your life – someone else will.
You are way more qualiﬁed to do this job over anybody else – even more so than all of them combined.
Let’s get to work designing ladies
That’s what I have for you today – let’s circle back next week but for now – make it a great day – take care!