Leadership Simplified: Doug Van Dyke


4 Secrets to Leadership Work-Life Balance

Volume: May 2014


By Doug Van Dyke, Leadership Simplified, www.leadershipsimplified.com


Life is hectic. As if I needed to mention that to you. In fact, the pace of work is getting faster and expectations are getting higher. Even the most organized professionals find it challenging to balance their workload with the demands of a busy, full personal life. Are there secrets that need to be unearthed in order to have work-life balance? The answer is “yes.” The professionals who best orchestrate work-life balance, master the following:    

  1. They embrace technology. Effective work-life balancers use apps that help them stay organized and help them day plan. In addition, they use voice recognition software that allows them to speak and auto-transcribe faster than they could possibly type. If you are not currently utilizing some of these tools, you may want to consider an app called Evernote and Dragon Voice Recognition Software.  Click here to download a free copy of our Day Plan Template on Evernote. 

  3. They are collaboration maniacs. Effective work-life balancers seek to increase their work efficiency by collaborating as much as possible with trusted work colleagues. Likewise, they frequently communicate with key people in their personal life in order to coordinate family, health, and life matters. On both the life and work front, they are fond of leveraging working agreements so as to understand and communicate clear expectations with the key people in their life. In the process, they create supportive environments that allow them to flourish in their personal life and in their work life.

  5. They strive for good health. Effective work-life balancers realize that to enjoy their journey they have to maintain balance with regard to their mind-body-spirit. Do not worry, I will not go on a rant about working out, or meditation, or religion. All I am saying is that the best work-life balancers take care of their body, have their head in the right place, and seek enlightenment, however they define it. For greater life-balance, consider elevating all three areas within your personal comfort zones. 

  7. They are clear about goals. It is amazing the number of people who are wandering aimlessly through life. I am not implying that everyone needs to have a highly structured life that is brimming with short-term and long-term goals. Rather, I observe too many people who are controlled by the events of their day. They do not plan, they do not strategize, and they do not set meaningful goals. As a result, their day (and to a greater extent the events in their life) controls what happens to them. They are totally reactive. Effective work-life balancers, on the other hand, are proactive. They plot out what they desire to achieve: Every day, every month, and in their life. Their work-life journey is centered on achievement and efficient execution. Work-life balancers realize their hopes and dreams by taking control and making positive things happen. If you do not possess the kind of work-life balance you desire, start by setting SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely) goals. In the process, determine what is most important to you, and what is of lesser importance. Then, focus on 4-6 important areas of your life. Control what you can control and do not worry about less important areas. The latter are simply distractions.


Bottom Line: A lack of balance causes things to topple. The same can be said for people and our work-life balance. If we are not focused in all the important areas of our lives, something will topple. This is not good. So avoid the creation of extra challenges by leveraging technology, staying healthy, setting meaningful goals, and embracing collaboration. The result will be a happier, more productive you.


Until next time, be well.   


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