December 21st, 2018

Looking Forward: How Will You Measure Your Life?

Reading Time: 4 minutes

You probably wouldn’t think it’s a good idea to treat your relationships like a job. Something about it seems cold and impersonal. But Clayton M. Christensen, James Allworth, and Karen Dillon, authors of the book How Will You Measure Your Life are suggesting you do exactly that.

Based on a talk Christensen once gave while teaching at Harvard Business School, How Will You Measure Your Life offers powerful insight about how to maintain the difficult balance of work and personal life. The authors suggest that, while the two may seem to be at odds with each other, work and relationships have more in common than we might think. They can even often benefit from the same advice, and you can learn how to find that balance with the Fabulous app.

Direct your resources toward your goals.

Is your life perfect exactly as it is? Be honest: It’s probably not. That’s okay! Being the best version of yourself is no easy feat. But that doesn’t mean you can’t work toward those ideals. The question is, however, are you actually doing that?

Think about the things that would make your life ideal for you. Now think about all the things you actively do to get yourself there. Chances are, most of your day-to-day decisions have little to do with your long-term goals. You’re just trying to get through the day.

The thing is, however, that how you allocate your resources—your time, energy, and money—determines whether you’ll be able to achieve those long-term goals. It’s normal to get caught up in the minutiae of the day, but you can’t let that derail you entirely from your goals. You can’t achieve what you don’t put work into!

One way to assess how your resources are being allocated is by logging your time with the Fabulous Log Your Time Challenge. Practicing this daily will help you become more focused and accountable for your goals.

Plan to change your plans.

Personal development junkies (like us here at Fabulous) love to plan. We love buying planners, making mind maps, and setting up a strategy for what we want to do and how we want to do it. The most meticulous among us will plan our days right down to the minute.

But what happens if your plans don’t work? What if you run into an obstacle that renders your plans null and void? Or worse, what if you spend so much time planning that you never actually do anything?

The thing is, however, that how we allocate our resources—our time, energy, and money—determines whether we’ll be able to achieve those long-term goals.

The planning trap is another one that’s easy to fall into if you aren’t careful. The authors of How Will You Measure Your Life believe that planning ahead is not inherently evil but, again, overdoing it can get in the way of the big picture.

So, go ahead and plan deliberately, but also don’t be afraid to keep an eye open for emerging opportunities. Emergent planning, being able to adapt on the fly based on changing circumstances, can open you to new ideas. It allows you to be experimental and make changes that might ultimately benefit you.

Perform meaningful work… on your relationships.

We all know the importance of deep, meaningful work. We talk about it at length here on the Fabulous blog, but admittedly, we really only talk about it from a career standpoint. However, meaningful work doesn’t only apply to your jobs. This laser-like focus can positively affect your personal relationships, too.

Think about it like this. You often take our close relationships for granted because you believe they require little maintenance. This couldn’t be further from the truth! If anything, your closest relationships require even more of your resources because they are the most meaningful to you.

This is what the authors mean by treating relationships like a job. By actively working on strengthening these relationships, their meaning increases to you. Not only that but spending time with people will love makes you happier.

So, take time to assess what your loved ones need and how you can serve them. Actively work on these relationships. They’ll flourish in turn, while training your empathy muscles, which can serve you better in future relationships, personal or professional.

How Will You Measure Your Life is a self-help book, but it is also a question you should seriously ask yourself. Do you really want a life measured in dollars? Or would you rather measure your lives in moments of joy, or time spent with the people and things you care about most?

Take a moment to think about this…what if the life you have lived and now live would return to you exactly as it has been and as it is, again and again and again?

What would your life have to look like for you to fully embrace reliving it? This is how you will define how you will measure your life, and Fabulous can help you can start this process by taking the Fabulous training, Your Life on Repeat.