Okay ... I'll admit it. I’m a recovering workaholic.
Don’t judge me by the title. Hear me out.
I once heard someone say, “Work-life balance is a myth.” Hearing this, I felt like someone was finally speaking my language. Even though I agree that we need to put less emphasis on work, achievement, and recognition (I am a product of my environment), I also feel like it's more complicated than that. I think there's more to the story than simply saying, “Okay, work is done. Now life begins!"
Rather than seeing “work” as this bad thing that needs to be tamed and relegated to its own distinct part of of my life—so as to not tarnish the pristine image of “life” in "work-life balance"—I see “work” as something that actually enhances my life.
Once again, I turn to lessons from the treatment room. When I have an awesome session with a client, it feels like I am truly alive. Anyone that loves what they do can probably attest to this. Are there days when I don’t want to go in? Sure. Are there times when I look forward to going home? Of course. But do I regularly feel enriched and personally nourished by the work that I do within the four walls of my treatment room? Ab-so-freakin-lutely.
But some part of me knows that working with clients one-on-one does not define the boundaries of my professional life or my life in general. I feel called to serve my community in other ways. No, let me rephrase that. I feel called to serve myself in other ways.
This year, I initiated a new creative project where (thankfully) I utilize skills outside of the treatment room. The Inner Sanctum is an aromatherapy community dedicated to education—to using essential oils for healing the body, mind, and spirit. One of our monthly offerings is an essential oil meditation. This means that at least once a month, I get to sit down and smell an oil, let it speak to me, and write about it. Then I share these insights with the community, so they can experience the same practice at home.
As much as I love doing these, I also resist them. I sit down to write and hear all the gremlin minions of my Inner Critic start chiming in. I avoid doing it. I wait for inspiration. Then I wonder if I can ever really do it again.
Finally, I stop and just do the practice. This is what I did today. Once again, I am amazed at what emerged. While I smelled Cinnamon (the oil for this month) and began writing, I remembered a phrase that my mom and I say often: "Your perfume becomes your medicine."
In thinking about this further, I realized that in so many ways, my work is becoming my medicine. By sitting down to do the “work” that I've created for myself, I’m actually able to work through some issues in my “life.”
Honestly, I don’t really want it any other way.
Owning your own business is hard. Running it well is even harder. But if it means being able to create a life that includes enriching work and healing ... Well then you might be closer to some sort of “balance” than you think.
Want to open up your life to greater healing with the use of essential oils? Join us in the Inner Sanctum, and get ready for your own insights to emerge.