I’m currently taking a course with University of Pennsylvania Wharton School professor Stewart Friedman entitled Leading the Life you Want. In it he speaks about leaders being real, whole and innovative and shares stories of people who have started without advantage and created very meaningful, powerful lives.
He believes that work-life balance being seen as a scale isn’t the best way to look at it as that symbolizes taking something from one side to give it to the other. Rather, he said the balance is more like a four-piece string quartet where sometimes you hear one instrument more than another, but they all combine to make a beautiful song. Each instrument has its time to shine.
One concept that stuck out to me was when he said that we live our lives to learn, earn and serve. Some see this as happening in a chronological order. We learn when we are young, we earn when we are middle aged, and we serve when we are retired. But he argues that happiness comes from lifelong learning, serving your community throughout your days and finding ways to earn that are compatible with your passions and goals.
What is something new we can learn today? Are we earning our money in a way that speaks to our internal mission? And how can we help someone on their journey in this moment? All these things will support us in leading the life we want.