This is a submission from a member of the Fit Dad Nation, Jody Eastland.
Work life balance.
A concept we all hear time after time and we see people on TV telling us all how good their life is. Well I look at the statement itself and I call bullshit.
The reason I say that is because if you look at the concept of “work-life” balance, it's defined in my opinion that work should be 50% of your life and everything else should be lumped into a broad category called "life".
I’m not an expert in this area, but just like everyone who gravitated to Fit Dad Nation either through Facebook or another source, we're all here for the same reasons. We're here to make our lives better. And recently the Work-Life balance concept is something that I have really decided to attack head on.
My story is not unlike anyone else’s, I've been married to my lovely wife for almost 7 years, have a beautiful 4-year-old daughter, have a nice house, and have a good career in the healthcare industry.
I exercises and played sports throughout high school and after college continued to work out, playing basketball and softball as well.
Then it happened
I started working, I was making money. I started buying things. And the months turned into years.
And here I am, almost 20 years later since I've been real active and consistently exercising and now I'm a shell of myself physically of where I once was. I fell into a rut over the years; years I spent partying, working, sleeping, and then waiting for the weekend to go out with friends again.
A vicious cycle that carried on for far too long.
My partying days are over now, but the cycle of sleep--get up for work--work--come home--spend some time with my wife and daughter--and then start all over again has been going on for some time now.
I just decided something had to give.
But where to start?
So I began looking at my work-life balance. What did that even mean?
What I discovered is that I was seriously stuck in a rut and didn’t know how to get out. I didn’t have interest in anything anymore except, watching sports on TV, drinking beer, and barbecuing on weekends.
Not saying there is anything wrong with any of that, but that is all I was doing. Of course I spent time with my wife and daughter, which is very important to me, but nothing active.
I decided that it was time for a change.
In looking at the concept of work-life balance, I really wanted to look at the "life" side and see truly what that meant. And after reading books by Brendon Burchard and Dave Ramsey, I had some ideas of what I needed to look at.
I’ve taken the “life” part of the concept and broken it up into different categories and the big take away was that there are several areas that just were not getting enough attention.
- Physical Exercise- The obvious one.
- Mental - Giving my mind time to decompress (put the damn cell phone away).
- Spiritual- Dedicating more time to my church and God, and honestly actually going.
- Relationship- Dedicating real time to my wife and daughter that doesn’t involve a Buffalo Wild Wings.
- Career/Education- Really looking at what road I wanted to go down for my career and really structure that pursuit.
- Friends/Family- A big one that I didn’t even realize. Since we have moved twice from Houston, I've lost that feeling of being connected to my friends and family. It's taken its toll and now I realize just how much.
Sounds crazy guys, but this is the best discovery I have made in years.
And I wish I could say I have mastered this and am on the road to complete balance, but I would be lying. I'm just in the beginning stages of this, but the best part is that now at least I know. I can set real goals now and have focus.
And that alone has been a great feeling.
I still need to get my big ass going in all areas, but it’s starting to come together. I just landed a great new job, and we don't have to move so now we can put some roots down in San Antonio.
I'm also setting goals in each area that are tangible and motivating.
This is not a short-term way of thinking either; this is how I'm going to look at life going forward. There are so many things I want to accomplish and achieve.
But being a great dad and husband is my priority above the rest.
Your life situations may be different than mine and that's perfectly fine. Just remember, it's not 50% work and the rest lumped all together.
Break down your priorities and dedicate time to reach your goals. I’m ready to beat the shit out of mine and be the best I can be.
My first 44 years have been good, but I want the next 50 to be great.
About The Author
Jody is 44 years old, has been married to his wife Delaine for 7 years and they have 4 year old daughter, Karly. They live in San Antonio, TX and he is a Regional Director of Purchasing for a Healthcare company.