According to a 2018 study, 45% of entrepreneurs cite life/work balance as their greatest challenge. This could be attributed to the fact that it takes a lot of time and dedication to build a business. It could have to do with the goal-oriented personality and persistent-idea-generating brains of those inclined to entrepreneurship. Rather, it could be the simple fact that life is made up of complex and competing values and conflicting desires, such as:

* Career and Family
* Ambition and Integrity
* Control and Compromise
* Community and Independence
* Creative Passion and Financial Success
* Need for Stability and Cravings for Adventure

Many of our unconscious images of life balance resemble a balance beam, with fulfillment and satisfaction positioned as stationary and level objects. We spend much of our lives taking small tentative steps towards this ideal to avoid disrupting equilibrium. A more constructive symbol might be the variable fluidity of a seesaw that moves in a constant, yet inconsistent rhythm; traveling in divergent directions. The goal is not to stabilize the board from the center, but to gently swing between the extremes without losing control, falling off, or getting queasy.

         Doodle of a see saw. The cursive text "life" and "work" sit on either end.                                

Balance is about living life in proportion, choosing perspectives, and prioritizing preferences. When you have an important deadline at school or work, you need to focus your energy on that project at the expense of other objectives. When you, or a family member gets sick, your assessment on what is of primary importance drastically shifts. Balance is not about avoiding these opposing poles—it is about navigating the tension between life’s ups and downs.

On Friday, November 30, 2018 from 12p-1:30p, WORK_SPACE will be hosting a unique Lunch & Learn which ironically features a traditional British High Tea. The topic is “Creatively Disrupting Your Business,” and will include an opportunity to network and an engaging discussion about infusing your professional life with innovation, inspiration and strategic risk. Seating is limited to 25 people and the first twelve people to register receive a $5 gift certificate to the Holiday Artisan Pop-Up Shoppe taking place Nov. 29th-Dec. 1st.

In the meantime, I’ve included some reflection questions to help you have a smooth ride on the seesaw of life.

1. What is your definition of balance? 
2. How do you know when you are out of balance? 
3. When you feel in balance, what are you capable of achieving?
4. Which choices in your life are moving you towards balance? Which seem to be moving you away?
5. What will you do this week to create an environment conducive to getting in the flow?

The Entrepreneur’s Alphabet of Values: B is for BALANCE
by: Stacey Zackin, PhD, MSW, PCC (Manager, WORK_SPACE)