If I asked you, “How satisfied are you with your life?” How would you answer? If you’re like me, maybe you’ll start with a vague and non-committal, “It’s good.” But in the back of your mind, you’re thinking about how work is slowly taking over your life and can’t remember the last time you did something “just for fun.”
Or, perhaps you’re comparing your awesome marriage to your stressful relationship with your boss to your average “I’ll do it when I have time” work out routines.
The tricky thing is, life is made up of many parts. We have family, careers, health, finances, and hobbies to work on and keep track on. If we’re not careful, we can feel like we’re putting our energy into too many things and not getting results, like the proverbial hamster running in never-ending circles on its wheel.
But we were meant to live abundantly full, not filled-to-the-brim, lives.
I think Lysa Terkeurst, in her book, The Best Yes, said it best:
The decisions you make determine the schedule you keep. The schedule you keep determines the life you live. And how you live your life determines how you spend your soul.
In other words, your every day decisions influence your soul & life satisfaction. Conversely, your soul and life satisfaction are dependent on your decisions.
One helpful tool I like to use to get a better gauge of my current life is a “life satisfaction wheel.” The wheel captures 8 of my most important life spheres (like marriage, spiritual, work, and health, etc). I can also rank, on a scale from 1-10, what my level of satisfaction is in each sphere. It’s a great visual tool to accurately see what my life looks like at a glance.
Then, I can start to ask myself the gritty questions: In the next few months, which area of life can I focus on will make the biggest difference? Sometimes, it’s not the area of life with the lowest satisfaction level. For me, it comes back to the “health” sphere and getting enough rest and exercise. What areas do I need to put more attention and energy into? What areas am I content with, and can just maintain my current routines and rhythms? What’s one productive action I would like to add? What’s one energy consuming activity I would like to eliminate?
Working through the life balance wheel and answering these questions gives me a better understanding of my current life, future goals, and actions steps I can immediately implement. In the process, I can also notice the little things I'm grateful for and any gaps between my perceived thoughts and reality. Knowing that I only have a limited amount of time and energy to create the abundant life I desire gives me freedom and permission to choose to focus on a few important aspects of life.
If you would like to try this for yourself, sign up for the weekly newsletter and get the “life balance wheel” as a free gift! You’ll also receive some personal tips and updates from me, delivered right into your inbox.
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Cheers to abundant lives,