“How do you do it all?” is something I’ve heard lots of times in my life. In fact, I wrote a blog post answering this in 2011. I’ve always loved meeting new people, networking, taking on new projects, going new places, trying new things. With the rise of social media in recent years, and coming to specialise professionally in this area, things got even crazier. The power and potential to connect with new people online is just huge. It’s exciting to have just hit 1000 followers on Twitter, have around 1600 contacts on Linked In and more than 3000 on my other business Facebook pages combined. Now, I never was super popular at school so maybe this is a subconscious attempt to make up for that! Numbers can be nice and I’ve noticed lots of people caught up in this “frenzy”. However I’ve come to realise something. Frenzy is not sustainable. It can in fact be overwhelming and tiring. Can you identify with that?
So here’s the next stage in my theory. I firstly came up with this for my Zestee Social Media School. I was trying to explain the trend in social media where businesses first get online and go a little crazy, but then kind of let their social media strategy slip. They just can’t keep up with everything. Then I noticed the same theory was relevant to my life in general. My mum was right, I AM doing too much! Well in my defence, I do feel I thrive and am happiest when I’m juggling a few projects at once. There’s just so much exciting stuff (and necessary stuff) to do and in fact one of the reasons I got excited about social media in the first place is that you can create and maintain relationships much more efficiently. However there does come a point where it’s too much. For me, it was adding kids, a business and a move to a new country in the mix. For you, it might be something else? I have noticed my friends, clients and most people it seems are just constantly BUSY, BUSY, BUSY. That is ok to a point. Life can be like that, especially with work, kids, a tough economy and increasingly huge amounts of information to digest. But what’s not ok is that so many people, me included, are just too often fatigued. So what can we do about it?
I think this may be the secret and the solution. Finding focus. Finding balance. But how? This has been the “holy grail” that I’ve been seeking for some time and feel I now get to glimpse more regularly. Balance and focus are tricky. They change regularly, but with self-awareness and support I believe everyone can find and maintain theirs. YOUR focus and balance will be purely personal. You may have it already, or, like me, you might be becoming more aware that you are out of balance and would like to fix it. After several years of mulling this over, I’ve actually created a “family business balance” model for myself that I refer to regularly with 12 areas of focus. Here’s my top 6:
Yes, maybe I still “do too much”. Some people are happy with only a few areas of focus. It depends on your personality and current situation. I’ve found I simply have quite a few things that I’m passionate about! I’ve also learnt to harness the power of social media. This has allowed me, for example, to be able to create and facilitate the Professional Parents & Dutch Australian communities of several thousand people in just a couple of hours a week.
Now, when new opportunities come my way, I can better analyse – do they fit my focus? As you can see, the first 3 areas are personal and the next 3 are professional. Please click through for more information about Zestee, Professional Parents and Dutch Australian. If they also fit within your focus, please get in touch!
I’d love to hear your thoughts on my theory. Does it resonate with you? As we wind down 2013, here’s a chance to address the frenzy and fatigue and find your focus for 2014.