Eight Spokes of a Balanced Life

When last have you attempted to access how balanced your life is? On the best of days, we barely make it to the ever-elusive to-do list. Finding balance in our life seems to be reserved for when we are on holiday and have time to reflect. The very popular coaching question that never fails to pull us back to reality is: “On a scale of one to ten, how important is it to achieve a balanced life?”

It happens more often than not that we think our lives are in balance, but if we take a closer look, your life is on the brink of going up in smoke and you did not even see it coming.

There is for example not a lot of sense in being an accomplished ultra trail athlete running 100-milers like there’s no tomorrow, but your finances are in shambles and you hardly spend any time with your family. Of you are a multi-millionaire, but you are so overweight that you can hardly breathe, let alone walk.

LIFE IF LIKE RIDING A BICYCLE. TO KEEP YOUR BALANCE,
YOU MUST KEEP MOVING.

ALBERT EINSTEIN

Origins of the Wheel of Life

The wheel of life is a visual tool used to assess and understand how balanced your life is at this present time. Using this tool, you map out the areas of your life on a scale of 1 to 10 in a circle that resembles the spoke of a wheel. Once you have finished, you connect the dots and see if your wheel is roadworthy.

Eight Spokes of a Balanced Life Wheel
Eight Spokes of a Balanced Life Wheel

No one person is alike and we all have different roles to play which change as you progress through life, but in the end, there should be eight main focus areas that need to receive attention at some point or another.

1.  Spirituality

  • Relationship with God
  • Morals & ethics
  • Stewardship
  • Spiritual Accountability
  • Local Church Affiliation

2.  Health & Wellness

  • Physical Fitness
  • Nutrition
  • Stress Management
  • Medicine & Healing
  • Mind/Body Wellness
  • Healthy Living

3.  Family

Relationship & activities with:

  • Parents
  • Children & siblings
  • Extended family
  • Spouse/intimacy/sex

4.  Finances

  • Financial Status/Management
  • Financial Planning
  • Frugality

5.  Career

  • Career Planning
  • Workplace Relationships
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Business Skills
  • Management Skills
  • Leadership

6.  Fun & Recreation

  • Sports & Hobbies
  • Arts & Music
  • Literature
  • Home Improvements/Garden
  • Travel
  • Leisure
  • Humor/Fun

7.  Personal Development

  • Self-esteem
  • Intellect
  • Lifelong Learning
  • Reading
  • Motivation
  • Recovery

8.  Social Interaction

  • Friends
  • Community Involvement
  • The Environment

How to complete the wheel of life?

Give yourself a score from one to ten in each category. One being very poor/close to non-existent to ten being an absolutely perfect score. Remember to be realistic and honest with yourself. If you want to, you can always make a dot between main numbers, i.e 7,5 if you honestly cannot decide between 7 or 8.

Connect the dots and see if your wheel has got any chance of being workable.

It does for instance not help if you score a 9 on half of the categories, but below 5 on the rest.

Completed Eight Spokes of the Balanced Life Wheel Audit

The results should be straightforward and self-explanatory as to where you need to spend more time and energy in your life.

The exercise will become even more valuable if you ask your family members, spouse, or co-workers to complete the wheel of life based on their assessment of you.

Somewhere between your answers and theirs you might find a clear plan on how to journey towards a more balanced life.

As a take-home, remember that nobody is perfect. 

Strive for progress, not perfection. 

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