It means that I don’t lose sight of what is important in my life and get out of balance over the long term. I love my work, and sometimes balance means a week of 12 hour work days and almost no time for me or my family. And, balance can also be a week of 4 hour work days and lots of time with my family.
I have a pretty serious list of what I want to see and experience in the world on my own and with my family, and making sure those adventures happen is key. If I only worked I would go crazy and get burned out. I want to go to my death content with the life I have lived and that is a great benchmark to check in on every 6 months. When I was younger I would work so much and so hard that I would get terrible burnout. I’ve learned to nip that in the bud before it leads to depression/malaise. I also am better about taking care of my needs to ensure I can be an awesome husband and father. I think a lot of people see that as selfish, but I truly believe that if you are not in a good place yourself there is no way you can truly be there for your spouse or kids in a positive way. To many of us walk around like zombies not realizing we are stretched too thin to do anyone any good.