Write Your Story

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How do you integrate Career, Life/Family and time for you?

6 responses to “Write Your Story

  1. Life is a continuing balancing act. I have felt out of balance when I spend too much time (physically or mentally) on career projects, on home improvement projects or focusing on one child over the other. It’s always important for me to pull back and review my priorities.
    Interestingly, one of my late found priorities is me. Following the flight attendant’s instructions, put the air mask over yourself before you take care of those with you. If I take care of myself with a yoga class or a long walk on the beach, I can return to my life with a more balanced outlook. I can breathe through the work project, cull time out for family on the weekend and keep on clipping the shrubbery without guilt.
    Balance does not happen instantly, it’s a work in progress; it’s an average over time.

    • Liz, I like how you talk about it as a long term work in progress. That’s the beauty of it – we learn (like you did with “you” time). When we check in consistently and regularly, we learn what is important to us and that enables us to decide in the moment. Thank you for sharing your story!

  2. “I was very uncomfortable about doing a particular assignment. I couldn’t say ‘No.’ I tried to speak with my boss but he assured me all would be well. I ended up ill. The feeling is when you are a ‘type A’ you always have to be the best. The harder I work, the more I will be rewarded. If I say ‘No,’ they’ll review me negatively. I want to make myself invaluable so that when I have to negotiate a salary increase, I’ll be rewarded. I also don’t want to let anyone down.”

    -Yvonne, Research Consultant, 25

  3. My demon is taking on too much. It comes from loving life and wanting to experience every possible opportunity and try all of the good stuff. Before working on this book, it was also influenced by the Feminine Filter: I felt I needed to DO IT ALL to be a good mother, worker, and worthwhile person. So, I would take on stuff I didn’t really want to do, like volunteering for the PTA, stepping up on tasks others didn’t want, organizing because I was “good at it”, and obsessing about perfection all of the time. This was sapping my strength and taxing my spirit. It was also impacting my ability to earn a living.

    Now I’m still doing a lot; coaching youth soccer, marketing a book, managing a busy consulting practice, and even learning to surf, but I’m much more satisfied and at peace. I’m more able to get perspective and am more willing to do things imperfectly, with enjoyment, than I was in the past. I’m learning to say, “no” and to become more selective in where I’m willing to invest my time. This has helped me get my career back on track, spend more quality time with my friends and family, and be more satisfied with my life. Criticism about my parenting or work habits, as seen from the uneducated outsider, just doesn’t bother me like it used to.

    I’m also getting more comfortable with being a work in progress; confident that while I’m not perfect, I’m doing a great job for who I am. I know now that my mistakes are honest and impermanent. It’s not the end of the world when I screw up, I just need to be humble and authentic about addressing it. When I apologize, it comes from the heart. I know now I can’t control how others feel about me; only how I act and how I treat them. It’s up to them how to respond; their response is a reflection on them, not me. This was such a liberating realization for me!

    Living an Orange Line by example could be a lot of pressure, but I’m giving myself space to mess up and keep trying. When I catch myself thinking or saying something judgmental about another woman’s choices, I stop myself and try to put myself in her shoes. The reality is, we all get to make our own choices and we all deserve the room we need to be imperfect so we can learn and grow.

  4. With the book pre-launch work, the launch, my teaching and some consulting, integration has been challenging over the last several months. What’s sustained me is knowing that it’s short term and of course, the passion I feel about the book. Because the book is tangible, my kids can see it in action and that has helped them. My husband as ever encourages me. Sharing child care (who’s taking who where when?) is necessary. The last couple of weeks have been more integrated – I have spent more time with family and friends. It’s always a give and take – sometimes career takes priority, others times family, others times me. I love the fluidity of it! I love living career, family and life to the full.

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