“The greatest discovery of any generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitude.” ~ William James
If you’ve got your life in balance, you will be a much happier person because then you’ll be living the life that you choose.
At this point, you might be skeptical…wondering, “Hey, if life balance is so great, why isn’t everybody looking for it?” Actually, everyone is looking for life balance in some aspect, even if it’s only subconsciously.
The problem is that there are any number of things that get in the way, and when a person gets into a rut, it is difficult to get out. Even if the rut isn’t fulfilling, even if it rubs you the wrong way at times, inertia tends to keep us in our ruts. And that’s a real shame.
So if you’re in a rut … what’s standing in your way?
If you know what is stopping you from achieving life balance, you can figure out how to change your life. Here are some examples of things that hold people back from achieving life balance:
“I have to make at least $200,000 a year to make my wife and kids happy.”
“I can’t quit my job and take a chance on starting a new business.”
“I’ve always been a project manager, I don’t know anything else.”
“If I did that, my wife/husband would kill me.”
Believe it or not, the number one thing that is holding back most people from achieving life balance is not fate or luck—it is their own personality, attitudes, and beliefs.
There’s an old African method used to catch small monkeys. The trapper cuts a small hole in the side of a large coconut just big enough for a monkey to slide an empty hand through.
Then he fills up the large, heavy coconut with sweet treats that monkeys like … and waits.
After the monkey appears, thrusts his hand into the coconut, and grabs a fistful of treats, the trapper rushes out to capture the monkey.
At this point, the monkey could easily escape by letting go of the treats, yanking his hand out, and running away.
But he doesn’t. It never occurs to the monkey to drop what he’s “worked for,” even to save his life.
Is this what you’re doing with respect to your life balance? Is your job or career—or both—killing you, yet you won’t turn loose of them?
If this is true, then allow me to suggest that what’s keeping you from going after your dreams and being happy are your self-limiting values and your outlook. In other words, you’re being your own worst enemy.
David Bohl has these suggestions for changing your attitudes and beliefs so that you break free from ruts:
- Grab a pad and a pen.
- Write down what you want your life to be like in 10 years.
- Now write down what your ideal life would be like right now—how would you earn money, where would you live, what sort of home would you have? Vivid details are best.
- Write down what’s keeping you from pursuing that dream.
- Think long and hard about what’s keeping you from your dream.
- What would it take to achieve your dream?
- What would you be willing to give up to achieve your dream?
Change starts within. You can’t change the whole world, but you DO have the power to change your attitudes and your beliefs. Put your energy into that.