Life/work balance is nonsense

© Ian Berry. All rights reserved.


I hear a lot of talk about life/work balance and I think most of it is nonsense.

The word balance for me implies equal. I prefer the word harmony, therefore life/work harmony.

My personal and business life are not equal or in balance and are never likely to be.

They are in harmony with one another, that is, they work together like a symphony, two sides of the same coin.

Changing what’s normal

Here are my 11 laws of life/work harmony. I trust they will help you live a more harmonious life.

1. The Law of Harmony

Opposites attract. There are always at least two sides to every story.

Possible Actions: Always think both/and, rather than either/or; accept the good with the bad; appreciate pleasure, gain from pain; focus on the positive, learn from the negative; and you will soon begin to find harmony in your life.

2. The Law of Possibility

The opportunities life offers us are endless. There are no limits, except those we place on ourselves. There is nothing we cannot achieve.

Possible Action: When you find yourself in any situation that seems hopeless, rather than focusing on what is, focus on what’s possible.

3. The Law of Personal Responsibility

No one else can make us feel or think glad, sad, bad or mad. How we feel and think are choices we make.

Possible Actions: We must own our feelings and thoughts and not get tangled in other people’s feelings and thoughts. We must let go of attachment to what other people feel and think. Soon we eliminate guilt and worry; two of life’s most useless and most debilitating emotions.

4. The Law of Attraction

Success is not something we attain, rather something we attract.

Possible Actions: Commit to life-long learning; focus on insight more than information and wisdom more than knowledge. The more we become who we are capable of becoming the more we attract success.

5. The Law of the Farm

You find fertile ground, plough it, seed it, and nurture it, and more often than not you reap a harvest. We get what we give. What goes around comes around. These are modern ways of describing an old adage; we reap what we sow.

Possible Actions: The message of this law is that we must focus on proven processes and detach from outcomes. If we are taking the right action, results take care of themselves.

6. The Law of Relationships

We gravitate to those we like, know and trust.

Possible Actions: Establish shared values with family, friends and work colleagues, and agree on how they will be lived; have shared goals and agree on the key strategies to achieve them; practice non-judgment; give genuine attention to others. Before you know it your relationships will be stronger and the great door of opportunity will open more often.

7. The Law of Service

Giving without attachment to getting back creates one of life’s great paradoxes; we get more back.

Possible Actions: Fully understand what others need and provide it; go the extra mile by adding value to every transaction and interaction; co-create wow experiences at work, home and play. Before long others will be serving you in ways beyond your wildest expectations.

8. The Law of Confidence

Confidence is to maintain a positive inner and outer images and display them.

Possible Actions: Demonstrate openness to learning and not asserting your way is the only way while at the same time believe in yourself; believe in others; speak and communicate from your heart; and confidence will rarely get mistaken for arrogance.

9. The Law of Actual Communication

Not all talk is communication. We often talk just for the joy of it. To actually communicate is to agree on some course of action even if it is to agree to disagree.

Possible Actions: To communicate better speak with a specific goal in mind and listen simply to understand, and when speaking and listening ask for feedback to ensure message effectiveness. You will most likely find you will speak less and listen more. The result however is to eventually eliminate misunderstanding, one of the great causes negative stress.

10. The Law of Adaptability

I heard a great saying one time better to adapt than be a sitting duck and get run over.

Possible Actions: Our willingness to adapt, be flexible, and go with the flow are keys to a negative stress free life. A key seems to be to realize, it is not what happens to you, it’s what you do about it (thank you W.Mitchell30). Take responsibility for your responses to life and life will respond to you.

11. The Law of Synchronicity/Interconnectedness

Everything is connected in some way to everything else.

Possible Actions: Seek coincidence, follow your heart, do what you love.

Be the difference you want to see in the world.



Since 1991 I have partnered with passionate and enlightened leaders in changing what's normal for the good of yourself, other people, our planet, and for profit.

My specialisations are:

  • Change people can actually believe in and make happen
  • Change where everyone can win (the technical term is creating shared value or CSV) a business growth...
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