For the majority of my career, a healthy work-life balance meant keeping my working and personal life separate. In recent years, however; I’ve found greater fulfillment by mixing the two.
In both work and life, I’ve started using my time more effectively by demanding more of it and being intentional with the outcomes I hope to achieve. Seeking significant growth, more rewarding challenges, and greater personal fulfillment, I scrutinize the resources, materials, and activities I choose to include in my life, looking for evidence of profound and positive impact along the way. I look for significant wins, the subjects, activities, and resources that will dramatically impact and improve the scope of my life to the highest degree possible.
No longer do I just read, I study. I treat the books I read like a Ph.D. program that requires a detailed approach, practical application, evaluation, and subject mastery. I used to try and learn as much in as little time as possible — a destructive habit I picked up cramming for tests in university. This learning was shallow, and I’ve come to realize that knowledge gained by taking shortcuts will never develop into profound or intuitive wisdom.
Knowledge gained by taking shortcuts will never develop into profound or intuitive wisdom.
A book will often take me six months to finish. I approach books as if they were a course outline instead of a recreational read. Progress through the material is slow and methodical and progression happens after I’ve demonstrated a level of mastery with a concept and evaluated the outcomes of the application. Applying a new idea may take weeks, delayed by the absence of a real-life opportunity. Assessing the results may take even longer.
The slowing down, and deepening, of my learning process has transformed both my working and personal life. The holistic approach to growth and ongoing education has brought more life to my work, more work to my life, and more balance to every day.
I’ve never been more full-filled in my whole life!