How well you are living your life right now? - The Life Wheel.1 March, 2012, by Seema Bhatnagar
Life comprises of several key areas, like our health, money, career, hobbies relationships and all of them must be in a right health in order to achieve a happy and harmonious life as thought by Thomas Merton
"Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance and order and rhythm and harmony."
This post is about helping you to find out how well you are doing in all key areas of your life. Life wheel (figure, given below) is a tool, which gives you a quick snapshot about your life at a current moment. It essentially is like a wheel having spokes creating segments of 8 key areas of life. The key areas are not just limited to 8, these are simply most common ones and many more key areas could be mapped, which you want to assess for satisfaction. Some other interesting areas which could be added are spirituality, self-esteem, contribution and creativity.I frequently use this Life Wheel tool in my coaching sessions to find out, how my clients are doing overall in life.
The figure given above is just to help you to get started. For each area there is a scale of 0-10, where centre represents 0 and it is 10 towards the edges of circle.You can assign your score as per your satisfaction level, on this scale, 0 represents lowest and 10 as highest level of satisfaction. Once you assign your score, join all the scores for each area and you will get a shape of your wheel for life. A brief description of different 8 key areas:
- Business/Career Relevant to entrepreneurs, people who are in job.
- Finances It is about the amount of wealth you have. How rich are you?
- Health It is for your health. How healthy you feel right now? It includes your sleep, diet, life style and exercise.
- Family and friends How well you are connected with your family members and friends? How many deep friendships you share?
- Romance It is about love and relationship in your life. Your love and relationship with your spouse/girlfriend/boy friend.
- Personal Growth It is about your overall personal growth and development which includes learning new things, setting and achieving goals for new habits and behaviours.
- Fun and recreation How much fun and enjoyment you have in your life?
- Physical Environment It is about environment under which you work or your surroundings. How comfortable you are with your environment at work or at home.
- Creativity It is about creative activities you do in order to enrich your creativity. For example, painting, writing, dancing or singing or it can be anything which makes you think and act creatively.
- Spirituality It about your balance of mind, body and soul. Any activity which brings you peace and harmony.
- Contribution It is about giving back to society. Activities which you do to contribute towards other's growth and development.
Different People have different understanding and regard for each key area of life.
Some people believe that love relationship is not so important in life and disregard it completely.Doing so they are simply blocking off the positive energy and losing the opportunity to understand the importance of real connections in life.This is such a unique relationship that having friends, kinship and siblings cannot replace it in any way. Many people think that since I do not have any relationship, I am blocking off positivity in my life. Well, it is true that I am not in any love relationship but at the same time I am open for developing conscious relationship and absolutely not at all against it. Read a related post, It is perfectly ok to be single.
Some people believe that they are satisfied with the current amount of money they have and think that if they want more money it would mean they are getting greedy. Money is simply an exchange of value in the society, the more value you create, the more money you will attract. Imagine, if you have more money you can help more people by generating employment or may be helping them in building career. If you have your own business, you can invest money in that to grow it further.Moreover, you can fulfil your dreams and desires. Personally, I have a dream (out of many others) to see and live at the most beautiful places on this planet (few, I have already seen), to enjoy the beauty and culture and for that I need lot of wealth. I am doing my level best to reach that point so that I can fulfil my dream. Nature knows abundance and it can create money in proportion to value you are creating for others. Do not limit yourself with a limiting thought of satisfaction, being satisfied is good but not at the expense of growth.
Some people believe that spirituality is not at all important in life and they simply disregard it. Unknowingly they block off the communication between mind, body and soul which is a basic foundation for mindfulness and conscious living and they end up living like walking human robots, having perturbed mental state lacking mindfulness. They realize it when they face the tough times in life and look for answers inwards.
Some people spend their entire life in studying and making career, ignoring family, friends, personal interests and hobbies, which actually makes them self centred and as a result they feel less connected to others and experience stress and depression out of this isolation.
Start your journey
Let's embark on a journey of knowing, how your life is doing right now. If possible, start this exercise if you have around one hour available in hand and you are in a good mood, not in any haste and preferably all alone. Pick up a pencil and paper and draw a circle as given in the figure above, you may draw more key areas like creativity, spirituality , contribution or any area for which you want to focus besides these 8.
Step 1: Assign ScoreSpend around 30-45 mins at this step.
Here are some relevant guiding questions given for each life area which you may ask yourself while assigning scores. Remember, this is not an exhaustive list but simply some pointer questions, you may add many more as you proceed.
The idea of this exercise is to map your satisfaction level in each key life area. Follow a basic rule while assigning
your score, more satisfaction means high score and low degree of satisfaction means a low score.
It is important to think deeply before you assign score, please hold yourself back if you think it is a game and you have to win it by scoring highest possible score. Be honest with yourself and think deeply while answering and it would be good if you also ask yourself "why" for each answer.
- Are you enjoying your current job, business or studies (in case of students)?
- Are you passionate about your work and not feeling any stress or anxiety?
- Have you achieved the desired growth (promotion, profit, results) in your chosen growth paths?
- Do you have a clear idea of what do you want to achieve in your business, career?
- Do you feel excited and energized to go for work when you get up in the morning?
- Are you satisfied with amount of money you have?
- Do you have a constant anxiety and stress about lack of money?
- Do you have a constant anxiety and stress because you have lot of money and you do not know what to do with it? Though some call this situation as fortunate but if it is not making you happy then it is negative indeed.
- Have you met your finance goals which you set previously?
- Are you managing your money well?
- Are you in perfect health?
- Are you suffering any illness? "Yes" answer does not mean a low score here, but you have to see if you are doing everything, which is in your control to improve the condition.
- Do you look after yourself well and not ignoring any sign of illness?
- Are you eating healthy and nutritious diet?
- Do you get enough sleep?
- Do you get regular exercise?
- Do you have peace and harmony at home?
- Do you connect regularly with your family members?
- Are family members concerned about each other's well being? Here, a family member means members of close and extended family.
- Do you meet your friends quite often and share meaningful deep bonding with them?
- Do you have like minded friends and family members who understand you well?
- Do you enjoy your love relationship with your spouse/boy friend/girl friend?
- Do you feel anxiety and stress whenever you are with your partner?
- Do you share deep bonding, mutual love and care?
- Do you feel that your partner has no interest in you anymore?
- Are you constantly learning new skills and adding up to your personal growth?
- Are you constantly challenging yourself to learn new behaviours, beliefs?
- Are you constantly looking for new opportunities in life to bring more growth? Your taking up this exercise conveys that you are already committed to personal growth to some level.
- Do you enjoy some personal interest and hobbies which you enjoy on a regular basis or cannot do it because you are too busy in your job/business/studies?
- Do you enjoy some sports or other recreational activity?
- Do you connect and socialise with people and community on a regular basis?
- Do you love your home surroundings and enjoy being there?
- Is your home or office cluttered?
- Do you feel comfortable, positive and productive enough to work there?
- Do you have all the right equipment that you need in order for you to work well from there, if you want to?
Step 2: Join the dots
Once you have assigned the score to each life's key area now it is time to join the scores for each one. After joining you will get a shape which we will analyze in the next step.
Step 3 - Analyze your life wheel's shapeSpend 45 Mins Take a look at the shape of your life wheel. There could be different types of shape based on the scores assigned.
- Small and constricted
- Lop sided
- Medium Size circle
- Full Big Circle touching edges
This suggests lack of satisfaction across several life's key areas, and overall discontent in life. You need to spend time and think about what exactly you want from your life and what would you like to achieve? How can you get inspired to do more and feel re-energized to feel more positive about life. Motivate yourself to expand your score to maximum possible extent, here it is only 10 which is a symbolic representation of highest satisfaction score, but think of stretching you score to maximum possible extent may be 100 or more.
This suggests that you're over-focusing on specific areas of your life, at the expense of other important key areas. Ask yourself how much more you would like to invest in those neglected areas and what are those obstacles which are holding you back from nurturing those areas. Make goals to achieve growth in neglected areas. Understand what new behaviours and decisions can lead you to a more harmonious life, i.e., a more circular shape, with higher scores.
This suggest that you are going well on your path of achieving harmony in life. It indicates a good balance in all key areas, but remember, you do not have to stop here and have to improve it further to maximum possible extent and that is 10 or beyond.
Congratulations. You are living a perfect life in harmony. Your happiness level must be very high and you are enjoying being yourself. As you know, growth has no endpoint so think about expanding your life further and get more abundance in your life.
Do not feel disheartened if you have got low scores overall or in any particular area, the key to personal growth is, first to identify that area which need your focus and secondly to set goals to achieve desired growth and satisfaction. It is never too late to enjoy a good and harmonious life so get started and make it as your top goal to live a harmonious life.
Why should you have goals?
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