Is it time for a checkup?

Photo courtesy of Jacob Metcalf (Creative Commons)

I had my yearly physical yesterday, and it made me think of other areas of my life that probably need to have a regular checkup. Yet I neglect those areas because I’m too busy right now, or not in the right frame of mind, or think I have it all figured out already. But do I really?

To be truly happy, you need to balance the different areas of your life. In rereading Dave Ramsey’s EntreLeadership book, I am reminded of the “wheel of life” that  he describes from Zig Ziglar. “The wheel has spokes that represent each area of our lives, and for our lives to be successful as a whole we must address each area. The spokes of goal setting are: career, financial, spiritual, physical, intellectual, family, social.”

My “wheel of life” tends to not be round, what about yours? I freely admit that I am a workaholic, so my career and intellectual spokes tend to get the bulk of my focus, while I neglect other areas.

I suggest a regular time to do a “checkup,” whether that is yearly, quarterly or even monthly, so you can get back on track before you’ve veered too far off the road. The following steps can help you balance your “wheel of life”:

  • Review – schedule a block of uninterrupted time to take a hard look at the last few weeks or months of your tasks and your calendar to see where you have been spending your energy. Just be honest in looking at your appointments and commitments to see what you spend your time on. This is not time to kick yourself for spending your time on the wrong areas, just an assessment of what you have been doing.
  • Refocus – consider your “wheel of life” goals (or jot some down if you haven’t done that before). What are your goals in the different areas of your life (career, financial, spiritual, physical, intellectual, family, social)? What do you hope to accomplish or emphasize in each of those areas over the next few weeks and months?
  • Realign – is one area of the “wheel of life” getting more attention than the others? There may be seasons when you focus more on a particular area, such as work, but be sure to balance that with the other areas or you risk burnout and frustration. Write down a new goal in each of your life areas for the coming months (writing makes it harder to ignore – just be sure to keep those written goals visible!).
  • Renew – make some pledges to yourself (and maybe to your family too) to be more accountable for your new goals. Place your written goals on your desk, in your calendar, or somewhere that you will see them frequently.

By doing a regular goal checkup, you can adjust your priorities and even out your “wheel of life,” which will lead to greater satisfaction in all the areas of your life. Even if there is an area that will continue to need more focus in the next few weeks, be intentional in your goals for the other areas and you won’t lose that balance.

How round is your “wheel of life” and what do you need to do to even it out?

2 thoughts on “Is it time for a checkup?

  1. My “Wheel of Life” would definitely not be easy to roll. While I am debt free and building up a savings, my family and social relationships are pretty strained. I feel like im pretty fulfilled in my physical and intellectual sides of my life but there is always room for improvement. While I am working in my intend field for my career, my heart isn’t completely behind what I do every day. Hopefully someday I can find something I love doing and be able to make a living doing it.

    • At least you are aware of the areas in which you struggle, and maybe you can make some small deposits or goals in those areas to even things out. That’s what I’m trying to do – I focus so heavily on work and writing that I tend to ignore the others. Working to remedy that a little at a time! Thanks for commenting and good luck with your new blog!

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