The pursuit of balance is stressing us out. It’s a maddening juggle of self, others, career. We’re aiming for “equal” parts of exercise, home décor, loverly devotion, career ambition, and family tending—and we wonder why we get sick when we finally take a vacation.
Striving for balance will derail your plans for greatness. Do you think that Leonardo da Vinci or Amelia Earhart or Oprah or Richard Branson set out thinking, “I want to live a balanced life”? No way. Their aim was on audacity, full expression, and all the boundaries that they were compelled to break — like most Creative Geniuses.
Does this sound familiar?: The thought of having an unstructured day, even if it’s on vacation, makes you break out in hives. Calling friends becomes part of your quarterly objectives. You feel guilty for taking time off from work to relax or play— “work” can be anything from your day job to just cutting the lawn on the weekend. You schedule in spontaneity. You complete a task that wasn’t on your to-do list, but you write it on your to-do list anyway just so you can have the satisfaction of crossing it out. Time management could be managing you.