“When you’re younger, you have this sense of your own immortality and you’ll always be able to catch up. You’ll make it up to your kid or you’ll make it up to your wife. But your kids are only young once and you can’t get that moment back.”
Dan Glaser, CEO, Marsh & McLennan Cos.
Profound words those. And we suggest that you allow the wisdom contained within those words to shape your approach to managing your life and schedules better.
Mistakes Professionals Make
Many professionals – especially those with large professional and financial ambitions – end up filling their schedules almost entirely with professional pursuits. Their non-work commitments and responsibilities receive short shrift.
And here’s what’s wrong with that.
You are Not a Production Unit
You are a person and not a production unit. There is more to you then merely work. Not that filling your life with work necessarily translates into better productivity. Studies, see links below, seem to state that it is doing less work, not more, that translates into peak productivity.
You are not a production unit. You cannot grind out the same amount of work endlessly like a machine. And even a machine needs down time to prevent wear out.
Remember that you play multiple roles in life. You would have a family and friends. You have a personal life. Your health and spiritual pursuits matter. Think of all these as the various balls or spheres that you must juggle. Think of all these spheres – except your work sphere – as being made of glass or crystal. The work ball, on the other hand, is one made of rubber.
If you drop the work ball, it will bounce back as it is made of rubber. The others, as they are made of glass will shatter, or at least crack. You may mend them, but the cracks will remain.
So, factor in every aspect of your life into your plans and daily schedules, and you will have a ‘fuller’ life. A ‘full’ life is one where:
a. the various spheres of our life are adequately taken care of
b. no single sphere was nurtured at the expense of another
Factor in Time for All Spheres
Each sphere that we juggle affects the other. For example, our personal life affects our professional life, and vice-versa. This inter-connection means that we cannot artificially compartmentalize our lives. Rather, we need to be mindful of – and allocate time in our schedule – for all the spheres in our life.
It is the only way that you can achieve fullness of life.
Remember Dan Glaser’s words: there are some things that you will never be able to make up for in the future. Bear this lesson in mind as you move to the next few lessons on prioritization and schedule development.