When the exceptions to your routines become the rule

Sometimes there are those intense, out-of-the-ordinary work seasons. Something comes up that’s big, and urgent, and just has to be done. And so sometimes, when that happens, you just make it work. You work nights, and weekends, and you just get. it. done. It might be a few days, a few weeks, or maybe even a few months. And that’s fine. That happens.

The challenge, though, becomes re-installing balance once the big, urgent thing is, in fact, done. Making sure that this exception to your routines doesn’t become your new normal. Closing the emails and walking away. Resisting the temptation to tend to a few things over the next weekend too.

How do you make sure your exceptions don’t become your rule?

It’s shockingly easy how quickly and imperceptibly our ‘exceptions’ – in work/life balance, study disciplines, exercise routines, prioritisation of relationships, or anything else that matters – can become our rules. And we don’t even recognise it.

What Does Your Picture of Success Look Like?

In his excellent book, ‘Essentialism‘, Greg McKeown recounts how “Jim Collins, the author of the business classic Good to Great, was once told by Peter Drucker that he could either build a great company or build great ideas but not both. Jim chose ideas. As a result of this trade-off there are still only three full-time employees in his company, yet his ideas have reached tens of millions of people through his writing.”

This anecdote remind us of something that is absolutely critical. As we try to live deliberately, we each have a different picture of success that we are aiming for.