The age-old question “can I have it all” defined. 9 work-life balance definitions from entrepreneurs who've made their work their lives

Posted on 11-14-2014 by
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Can we really HAVE it all with all being defined as work / life balance? This question has been pondered and posed by the masses with the advent of smart devices and BYOD. Where does the separation of work stop and personal life begin? An interesting article via FastCompany posed the question – What does “balance” mean, and can we ever have it? – to entrepreneurs who have made their work their lives. Below are 9 different definitions on their meaning of work-life balance, according to the FastCompany article.

1. Know What Feeds Your Energy - Jacki Zehner, CEO of Women Moving Millions
For the everyday decisions, Zehner chooses what she says “yes” to based on “the things that feed it” and “the things that depletes it.” For example, she knows that she gets energy from groups and networking event …”

2. Talk Openly About Your Struggles -Ari Horie, founder and CEO of Women’s Startup Lab
“So often, I see so many women feel guilty [about their work-life balance], but they isolate it. They don’t want to talk about it. I think it’s important to talk about it.”

3. Remember That Life Is A Marathon - Natalie Madeira Cofield, CEO of Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce /Founder of Walker’s Legacy

“When I was 25, everything needed to be done by 30. When I was 21, everything needed to be done by 25 … there are far more people who’ve done the marathon of life instead of the sprint. It’s all about perspective.”

4. Think More and Work Less -Brian Halligan, co-founder and CEO of HubSpot
“I find that I am at my best professionally when I am well-rested and have time away from email to actually think…
I've created significantly more time in my life for naps and meditation…One of my big initiatives this year is to think more and work less. I think it makes leaders and companies significantly more productive and successful.”

5. Don’t Require “Unnatural” Things From People - Chris Golec, founder of Demandbase
“Work-life balance is about not requiring unnatural things of people. In other words, recognizing that everyone is in a different phase of life, has different challenges, and needs the freedom to handle those obligations…We all have to work a lot, but lack of balance happens when people start to feel guilty about taking time to meet their out-of-work commitments.”

6. Get More Sleep -Amy Errett, cofounder of Madison Reed
“It’s little things like, I don’t put my phone next to my bed…I know that I’ll be reading emails all night. The phone goes to a separate room in these hours so that I can get more sleep so I can be more effective.”

7. Schedule In Some Fun -Monif Clarke, CEO of Monif C. Plus Sizes
“My secret to having work-life balance is to schedule in my fun. At the beginning of the week, I have a reminder that says ‘schedule fun.’ …
Now I have scheduled time with my personal trainer, my boyfriend, family, and friends.”

8. Realize That You Can’t Do It All -Nick Taranto, Co-Founder of Plated.com
“You can only cut so many pieces from the pie. Work-life balance means making decisions around where, who, and what you're going to sacrifice, because you can't do it all…
Since I got married and had a kid, I've become much more focused. I now acknowledge that I can't do it all, and that's cool, because I'm going to be world class for the people and opportunities that I focus on.”

9. Follow Your Passion - Jeremy Wickremer, founder of Transformational Media Summit
Wickremer believes that one of the [best] ways to feel that you have work-life balance is finding work that you’re passionate about and realizing your full potential.

What do you think? Are the above ideas too generic or do these resonate well with your career path?

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