..bring up your kids and spend time with your family. I’m a huge advocate for working hard (and smart) and striving to succeed in business but I’m just as enthusiastic an advocate of a healthy work-life balance. I’ve seen friends over the years work themselves to the bone, creating very successful businesses along the way, only to one day realise their children had grown up without them and they couldn’t get a second chance to do things over. In the film “Courageous” Adam Mitchell told his audience:

“You can’t fall asleep at the wheel only to wake up one day and realize that your job or your hobbies have no eternal value but the souls of your children do.”

Deep stuff, but I agree with him. I guess it’s as much about motivation as anything else and from what point or perspective we plan our goals.

If you’re young free and single you don’t need to worry too much about this stuff just yet but as a Dad my goals now are very different to 20 years ago. They’re also far more powerful and they drive me with a force I couldn’t have imagined back then. When my motivation began to involve the lives of others I cared for and not just my own, my need to “fake it ’til you make it” became far less than before. Suddenly there was always a great reason to rise in the morning, a real meaning to it all that was truly inspiring as well as motivational.

I don’t want to go too deep into this and I certainly don’t want to make anyone feel bad about how they live their lives but I was left mulling my own motivation again this morning over breakfast. I’d promised my family that I would take this Easter week off and spend some quality time with my wife and 9 year old son. Yesterday I quickly checked my diary which showed this morning to be the bi-monthly business breakfast meeting I always attend. Instinctively, my mind went into organisational mode and I wondered if I could get up at 5am, nip to the meeting and get back home before anyone had really noticed. I tossed the idea around in my mind and then came up with a resolute “NO!” My wife and son ARE the main reason I work as hard as I do, the ones who put the meaning into 3 x 5am starts in a week smack in the middle or a cold and dreary winter, so why would I swap even a a couple of the hours I was booked in to spend with them for a business meeting that I actually don’t need to attend.

Sometimes there’s great value in not only planning our goals but also re-assessing their validity and importance in the grand scheme of things because the grand scheme of things is ultimately our long term goals and they have a tendency to affect the lives or many.

Happy Easter, everyone!