Lead a Balanced Life

Lead a balanced life (Via Lifehacker.) Lifehacker is often a low signal to noise feed for me, but this was one of those (non-technical) gems that keeps me subscribed. This bit in particular caught my attention:

Recognize you have the right to be healthier than those around you.

I also followed the link through to the original post, where these ten tips are all elaborated (my own reflections are in parenthesis):

  1. Go home from work on time. (I started doing this before I quit. Now I need to stick to regular work hours. Both tactics have worked well.)
  2. Don’t be a yes person. (This one is still very difficult for me – and I’ve gotten much better.)
  3. Go to bed and get up at the same time everyday. (I’ve been slowly getting better at this over the last few years… and I am finally starting to wake up without an alarm clock on a week day – and it’s much nicer.)
  4. Slow down. (This is still very hard for me, but I’m getting better… sometimes.)
  5. Don’t buy into the culture around you if you don’t want to. (I think I do well at this… but boy is it relative… do I buy into the edublogger culture too readily?)
  6. Create your own sub-culture involving your friends and family. (What a great idea! I’ve been missing this.)
  7. Recognize you have the right to be healthier than those around you. (The original post actually says “if everyone else around you drink too much coffee – that doesn’t mean you have to” – and I’ve been clean for almost six months! Still, I appreciate finding this reminder.)
  8. Do something meaningful with your spare time. (I think a PhD counts… but I miss playing guitar and writing songs… ah, but this is about volunteering. I still get a zero there – except that I work in education – and do lots of overtime for free.)
  9. Let go of the need to buy the next big thing. (It’s hard, but working for myself has suddenly made me much more thrifty.)
  10. Develop compassion, patience and tolerance for your fellow people. (This always takes work.)

The original post is worth a read, too.

I was also happy to see this related post – especially since I’ve made getting to the gym regularly a priority now that I set my own schedule: Exercise can make you a better entrepreneur (Via Lifehacker.) Others, including educators, can reap these benefits, too – particularly this one:

Growth: When you are working out, you are growing. Even if your only growing physically, your still on a path to a better place. This dynamic alone improves your mindset tremendously. There is no worse feeling then being stagnent.

Ultimately, if we can’t lead a balanced life, we can’t fully serve our students – or model a healthy life for them. I know I’m a “work-a-holic” because that’s what I knew growing up. I hope I’ll set a better example for my kids, my students, and participants in my professional development sessions. In fact, these “and Life” posts are an effort to do just that.

Incidentally, speaking of balance… I posted this while on a conference call. But is that good or not? ;)

UPDATE:I’m going to answer my own quesion – on balance I think that’s bad. In fact, I’d like to add one to this list.

11. Let yourself do one thing at a time. (This makes me so much more satisfied from moment to moment and at the end of the day… I can point to a few things I did well.)