In my last post, I shared a little bit about how I try to achieve balance among my competing interests. Full disclosure: I completely failed at balancing anything this week. I had such good intentions, but work, bar association events, socializing and general fatigue all got in the way, all at the same time. I happily serve on multiple bar association committees, I blog for my law firm, I go out with my friends, I enjoy supporting my coworkers, I train for triathlons and I work full time and this all collided this week. Ahhh! So, what do you do when your best intentions go unrealized?
First, keep perspective. Whatever your interests are in life, I’m sure they are long-term passions that can be pursued over the course of years, if not decades. It’s ok to brush off 3 or 4 extremely difficult days. If that extends to 3 or 4 weeks or many months, I would suggest it’s time to re-evaluate what’s happening in your life. Women in particular have difficulty giving themselves permission to relax. And women really hate it when anyone actually tells them to “relax.” But, I fly in the face of this wisdom and tell myself to take a chill pill, recuperate over the weekend, and know that next week will be better. Always, always face forward.
Second, do what you can. Whether it’s art, cooking, writing, or triathlon training, devote as much time to your passion as you can. I very often can’t finish long workouts before the office beckons in the morning. I have to either come back to the treadmill at night, or abandon the workout altogether. But I do what I can! This week, it was 30-minutes at a time. For those heroes who claim to “enjoy” cooking multi-course dinners (you know who you are), but can’t pull it together on a Tuesday night, whip up what you can! In my house, at least, anything you create would be greatly appreciated, and I’m sure your family feels the same. It goes for any activity, even if you can’t give it as much time or attention as you like, I guarantee that something is always better than nothing.
Ask for help. Not to rag on the ladies, but I personally see a lot of women fail at this one too. Reach out! There are lots of people who love you and want to see you succeed. My office is blessedly relaxed about morning arrival times so that I don’t have a nervous breakdown if I’m fifteen minutes late. But, should your office operate differently, propose a solution that works for you and work out a compromise. Ask your partner to walk the dog in the morning. Have a friend call you in the morning to wake you up if you need the extra motivation (I have done this for people on so many occasions). These things are small, and your fans will gladly accommodate your requests. But these small things can also make a huge difference. An extra fifteen minutes in the morning can change the tone of your whole day if you get to spend them in a way of your choosing.
So yes I felt a little bit like a failure (cringe) this week, but anyone who has a lot going on in their life should really only ever feel like a success. We’re all jugglers and gymnasts these days, so I electronically pat all of you on the back for a job well done, and a week well-lived. Happy Friday!