Leading a Balanced Life

Your life and your work need to be in balance.  Many times we perceive this balanced life concept as only pertaining to not working on weekends.  That is but one aspect of balance.  Another aspect is doing work you enjoy.  If work sucks, life sucks.

Creating maxims for balance at work requires you to define what is or is not acceptable behavior for you, your boss, your coworkers, and your team.  If you focus on finding work you enjoy and have passion for, achieving work balance will naturally follow.  Confucius provided some powerful guidance on this point when he said “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”  Your maxims should help you consistently steer yourself toward work you love and away from work you do not.

A maxim by definition is a principle or rule of conduct.  In the context of the leadership maxims approach, it is a short, personally meaningful and easily explained statement that reflects one of your beliefs about leadership.  Maxims do not contain buzzwords.  Maxims are simple, clear statements that serve as reminders for how you want to behave and lead and how you want your team members to behave.

I invite you to share your maxims and ideas related to leading a balanced life in this forum.  Simply write your maxim and share the personal story behind it in the comments below.  I’ve shared a few of my own.  I look forward to reading yours. If you’re interested in courses we teach related to leading a balanced life, just look for the LBL icon on our course listing page.

8 Comments → “LEADING A BALANCED LIFE”


  1. Duane Penzien

    4 years ago

    Mike, I have been working through your book since I got it (pre-ordered it on Amazon) and for me, the hardest part was Leading a Balanced Life. I’ve spent a lot of time reflecting on this, since I often struggle to maintain any kind of balance in my life. You brought home to me that in order to have the kind of creative energy I need in my professional life, I also need to bring the correct balance in my personal life – I can’t have one without the other and unfortunately that is what I’ve been trying to do. This is going to take a lot of work on my part, but I am fully committed to doing it. I’ve borrowed the Fred Flintstone maxim; that really resonated with me, as I used to watch that cartoon when I was a kid. Here are a couple of others that I came up with:

    A Rainy Day Camping is better than a Good Day at Work.

    An Hour being Creative is better than a Week at Work.

    Work is Temporary: Love is Forever.

    I have a centered personality (no left or right brain dominance), but all too often I do not exercise all of my personality. This is what I have resolved to change and your book is instrumental in helping me to accomplish that. Thank You!

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    • Mike Figliuolo

      4 years ago

      Work is temporary. Love is forever.

      Great maxim Duane. Thanks for sharing and I’m thrilled to hear you’re finding the book helpful!

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  2. Edna Pasher

    5 years ago

    Family above work.

    My kids are more important then my clients.
    I encourage my clients to adopt this philosphy too and I am available to help their kids in addition to their people at work.
    My employees are expected to help me make my family happy.
    I am committed to this too – with their families.
    This way our firm has become a family too! It is a very strong competitive edge !

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  3. Ben

    5 years ago

    My maxim for keeping in balance at work is “Somebody’s gotta do it.” I personally tend to focus on tasks and projects that I love and enjoy. I’ll pile my plate high with that kind of work. The problem is I often neglect the less “sexy” work that still has to get done.

    One day my boss asked me about several non-sexy projects I was supposed to be working on but hadn’t made much progress against. As I made excuses as to why it wasn’t getting done and explained all the other work I was driving (the sexy stuff) she stopped me mid-sentence and said “Look, I know you have a lot going on and the projects that are behind aren’t fun but somebody’s gotta do it.” She was spot-on.

    I use this maxim to keep my work in balance by ensuring I tend to *all* my responsibilities – not just the ones I enjoy.

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  4. Karen

    5 years ago

    I typically work at all hours of the day and all days of the week because my schedule is pretty flexible. Recently I had a business partner want to schedule a call with me on a Tuesday afternoon. I told him “I’m already booked. I have an appointment with Julia.”

    He asked who Julia was. I told him she is my seven year old niece and we had an appointment to go get our nails done together. He laughed and said “good for you!”

    So that’s my maxim: “I have an appointment with Julia.” It reminds me to take time out, block time on my calendar, and attend to my family and friends and that my business partners will understand and be supportive of me doing so.

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    • Mike Figliuolo

      5 years ago

      First, I’ll bet your niece was tickled to spend the time with you. Second, in my experience, most people are very supportive of you taking time with family if you’re willing to explain it to them. Good for you for including that notion as part of your maxim.

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  5. Nick

    5 years ago

    I just came up with this maxim recently – “I’ll be on my honeymoon.” Right now I have a ton of clients and work to do and I had multiple projects in flight right up until my wedding. I was worried about being away for a week on my honeymoon and how I was going to get the work done. I finally just told my clients “I’m going to be out for a week. I’ll be on my honeymoon.” I was surprised that all of them were really supportive and understanding of me taking the time away from the projects. It reminded me about what’s important and what my priorities are as well as that people will generally be supportive of you having a “life” outside of work.

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    • Mike Figliuolo

      5 years ago

      As one of those clients, Nick, I hope I wasn’t too much of a pain asking for a lot of work to get done before you headed out! And yes I’m very supportive (and encouraging) of people having a life. I routinely say no to meetings so I can attend baseball games, school award ceremonies, and other more important events. The work will always be there when you get back.

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