The headline of a recent email I received from SMEI really caught my eye.
“People who read business books make more money – a lot more!”
The email continues by stating that “According to a number of studies, business people who read at least 7 business books a year earn over 2.3 times more than those who read only one book per year*”
You’ve likely heard similar stats yourself. The proof is undeniable – reading makes you smarter and gives you a fresh perspective from which you can make better decisions, implement new ideas or processes and be more successful.
I’d like to take this one step further though. Beyond reading business books only, which I fully endorse, what about expanding your horizon into two other important areas of your life. I encourage my coaching clients to consider further development in three key human growth areas – physical, mental and spiritual. Consider what could happen if you were to not only read, but also engage and associate with other like-minded individuals in pursuits and activities that make you better and help you grow to become a more fully developed human being. The upside of this balanced approach is to realize intellectual, emotional, relational and spiritual growth benefits you holistically – that’s when you are living in the sweet spot!
Use the following Venn diagram as a reference point to evaluate your life balance. Each of the circles represents the three areas – physical, mental and spiritual. Conduct a mental evaluation, and draw your own version to the scale where they are for you. Are the three circles balanced, lopsided or worst yet – are any being ignored?
3Q Physical Mental Spiritual
I’m a believer that you either “pay now or pay later” in terms of the effort required to achieve and maintain success in all areas of life.  For example, you can ignore your physical well-being by not getting regular medical check-ups, not exercising and eating food high in sugar/salt/fat and one day have your body send you a wake-up call that you have problems. A better idea is to proactively contact a dietician or nutritionist to prepare a customized health optimization plan or start working with a trainer or accountability buddy to make sure you exercise.
When you define the area(s) that need attention take decisive action and commit to start. It’s a cliché but so true – “After all is said and done, more is said than done.” Your first small steps can lead to great outcomes so start moving your feet!

There’s no such thing as work-life balance. There are work-life choices, and you make them, and they have consequences. ~ Jack Welch

* Source: United States Department of Labor, Survey by Yahoo! Chief Solutions Officer Tim Sanders and Business Majors.