A Surefire Way to Create the Perfect Work Balance with the Magic Wheel of Life
Time management requires practice and preparation. You need to practice various techniques to improve your ability to manage time, as well as take steps to be prepared each day. Though, in addition to planning your work schedule, you need to find a way to balance your work commitments with your life commitments. You cannot let life get away from you.
One method of striking a balance between work and life is to use the “Wheel of Life Exercise”. This simple technique is used by millions of people on a regular basis. So, if you struggle to balance your work demands with your own personal happiness and growth, then take a moment to complete the wheel of life exercise.
What is the Wheel of Life?
First, it should be pointed out that the wheel of life exercise is not connected to the Buddhist wheel of life. That is more for spiritual and mental awareness. Instead, the wheel of life that you will be using is designed to help you figure out how you are currently spending your time.
You can find a copy of this wheel in the FindFocus Productivity Planner. Print out the planner and fill it out as you follow along with the rest of this article:
The wheel of life is divided into 8 categories representing different aspects of your life. Take a look at the image above. The 8 categories cover everything from personal growth to your physical environment. All of these categories are integral to your satisfaction with life. If you want to find the perfect work/life balance, start with the wheel of life exercise.
Rate Your Level of Satisfaction
After you print out the Productivity Planner, you will rate your overall level of satisfaction in each category on the wheel of life. Do not rush through this process. It is important that you are honest with yourself. Take your time filling out the chart. Rate your satisfaction on a scale between 0 and 10 – 10 being the highest score. Here is a closer look at each of the 8 categories:
- Personal Growth – Are you satisfied with your personal growth? Do you try new things and explore new ways of improving yourself?
- Money – Are you happy with the amount of money that you earn? Are you happy with your career?
- Health – Are you happy with your level of physical fitness?
- Fun & Recreation – Do you take the time to enjoy yourself? Do you have hobbies that you enjoy?
- Significant Other / Romance – Do you actively work on your relationships? Are you satisfied with your current relationship?
- Family & Friends – Do you support the interests of your family? Do they support your interests?
- Career / Mission – Are you doing everything in your power to advance your career and reach your goals?
- Physical Environment – Are you happy with your current living situation? Does your current environment support your goals or interfere with your plans?
Give each of these categories some thought. Go through them one at a time, but do not spend too much thinking about your satisfaction level. The first number to pop into your head is often the most accurate estimate.
Rate your satisfaction on a scale of 0 to 10. On the Productivity Planner, fill in your level of satisfaction. You will see that there are 10 sections to each pie in the wheel. Color in the section, starting from the center of the circle, until you reach your satisfaction level.
Evaluate Your Results
After you have finished filling out the wheel, you need to evaluate your results. Scores between 8 and 10 are fantastic. This means that you are spending enough time on these categories.
Continue what you are doing to maintain your happiness in these areas. You do not want to slack off or take these scores as a sign that you can spend less time on these categories. Otherwise, your satisfaction level can start to slip.
Any category that received a score between 5 and 7 requires some exploration. You should come up with ideas to increase your satisfaction level.
If you have any categories that received a score of 4 or less, then you need to reconsider your current routine. You are neglecting these areas. You may need to devote less time to certain categories and more time to these categories.
Creating an Action Plan
When you have scores that you want to improve, you need to create an action plan. You need to put the wheel in motion. Use the ratings that you gave each of the categories to prioritize your time. You should start with your weekly schedule.
Look at your entire week and determine which days you will be able to devote more time to specific categories. Afterward, you will need to mark these days on your calendar. Once you have a general outline of what you need to accomplish for the week, you are ready to come up with a plan for the day.
Each day you should look at your weekly outline in order to determine your goals for the day. Remember to add these to your daily planner and consult your wheel of life to set your life balance for the day.
You should place a priority on tasks related to the categories that need more attention. For example, if you have been neglecting your social life, then find time during the day to chat with some friends or meet up for lunch. Write down the names of the people that you should reach out to today.
Continue to Use the Wheel of Life
The wheel of life is not an exercise that you perform once and forget about. This is something that you should continue to use on a regular basis, which is why it is included in the Productivity Planner.
Too often people lose focus in life and start to procrastinate. Do not fall into this trap. Every day, take a few minutes to fill out the wheel and decide what you can do today to improve these areas of your life.