When facing a life balance challenge, or even a crisis, try something new.
The entertainment industry is a demanding, fickle, and high-risk environment. Founded on intense creativity and marketing, it can be one of the most unlikely environments for long-term individual success. Yet out of this environment, we find a lesson that takes us “back home.”
Shonda Rhimes, the media titan behind hit television shows Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, and Scandal, was driven and always loved to work. However, in her biography she states that she eventually found herself “overworked, overused, overdone, and burned out.” She asked herself, “What do you do when the thing you do, the work you love, starts to taste like dust?” Her work depended on her amazing creative energy, but, almost overnight, POOF
. . . it was gone! She continues, “I needed to figure out how to get my inspiration back! At almost the same time, I realized my family life was also in trouble.” As a single parent, with these huge work commitments, she watched as her kids were quickly growing up and needed her attention more than ever.
Shonda made a critical decision. She notes, “I resolved to simply choose to always say yes to my kids first. I feared this would take an incredible amount of time, but have you noticed kids today have fairly short attention spans? These ‘yes’ requests only took about 15 minutes before the kids were off onto something else, like homework, friends, or other commitments.” The unexpected result was that by focusing on her kids, she slowly began to get her creative energy back. She discovered that the real source of what she calls her “buzz” came from the personal time she spent with her children.
At times, we can all relate to some of the feelings Shonda was experiencing. Work, projects, relationships, and life can all begin to feel less fulfilling. When you find that you are facing a life balance challenge, or even a crisis, try something new, something that you had been saying “no” to. Say “yes” and give it a try. As you do this, while obviously staying within your personal moral code, you may find that you benefit in several ways—ways that you’ve never imagined. Your life takes on a more desirable balance and you have unleashed the power of “Yes!”
A few points for reflection:
- What is the source of your “buzz?” What situations energize you physically and intellectually?
Do you place a high priority on these activities? How can you adjust your schedule accordingly
- Do you schedule personal time each day? This is particularly critical when you are feeling like your role is monotonous, or less than fulfilling. Are you taking on other people’s responsibilities?
- What is your method of prioritizing your demands? Do you identify what is most important and schedule them first?
- Are you willing to “shake up” your routine? Try something different and see if you can get your creative juices flowing again. Look for new ways to bring needed balance to your life.