work-life balance might not be ideal

integratedlife

Over the past 4 days I have been at the region III CASE ASAP conference with a group of 10 incredibly inspiring students in the beautiful Charleston, SC. Sunday mornings are pretty exciting for me because Sundays are my ‘me’ days – the days I get to focus on personal goals and tasks I had been too busy to complete throughout the week.

Sadly, today was not one of those Sundays. I woke up cranky about 1) our Charleston trip being over, 2) having to drive 5 hours to get my students home and 3) needing to catch-up with work I had been putting off while at the conference. My Sunday was not looking very glamorous…

…until I saw this video. In this TEDTalk, Teresa Taylor describes how many of us (myself included) work towards finding balance when we should really be striving towards “integration.” In other words, instead of balancing work & play, integrate the two!

Teresa recommends these three strategies on how to integrate your life:

Live authentically // You can’t be one person in one place & then go home and be completely different. Integrating allows you to take your best self into each environment, as opposed to balancing which environment should get your best self that day.

One life, one calendar // Combining your personal & professional calendars helps you see the bigger picture and make conscious choices about how to spend your time. Once an item is put into the calendar, make sure you are fully present while you are addressing that particular item.

Make time  // You have the power to put things in you calendar that give you energy and help you get through the day. Setting a time-limit for each item in your calendar or on your to-do list is difficult, but it allows you to be more efficient and move forward to address other tasks as well.

The world we live in is not going to change, but how we respond to it can… Don’t let others set expectations for you, set your own expectations & set them the way that you want.

-Teresa Taylor

 And with that little reframe, I had my a-ha moment. Maybe searching for balance is not a good strategy, after all.

xo vm

// read my most recent thoughts on balance here

//more on the importance of a positive attitude here

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