The 5th Dimension

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Countdown to Book Launch: Carbon into Diamond

I am so excited to announce that my book, Stop Settling, Settle Smart, is officially launching on Amazon on February 5th! In preparation for that, I wanted to do a short series introducing some of the major themes and topics that will appear in the book. And to start, the first concept is turning carbon into diamond, or pulling out of the unsustainable work-life balance model and into the polished and unique Stop Settling method in order to Settle Smart.

Work-Life Balance is a Myth

As most of you know by now, I am a critic of work-life balance. As prevalent as it is in the media, championed by successful and influential entrepreneurs, it is really only attainable by a handful of people. At least, that’s how it appears on the outside. Get close to someone who believes that they have it all, and probe further, and you will most often find things like hero syndrome, imposter syndrome, and major anxiety about falling off the pedestal. Most of us are not serial entrepreneurs who can or want to always focus on work while occasionally scheduling in time for family and friends. The constant push to do it all that work-life balance evangelizes will put most of us into a hamster wheel without ever pausing to ask ourselves to what end are we running? Sprinting a full marathon will end in injury or non-completion.

I used to be enamoured with the work-life balance model. Being it all by DOING it all? Achieving balance in my life where I could do everything I wanted to while not disappointing or letting anyone down? I was hooked. And I ran in that little hamster wheel until, finally, one day, I achieved the “balance.” Nevermind, that my world around me was crumbling while I was determined to reach this balance. I had done it. All my problems were solved (despite my major depletion).

And then the hamster wheel started turning again and the struggle began anew.

The Stop Settling Quiz

This is why I created the Stop Settling method (quiz and spectrum), which grew into a mindset, then ultimately into a movement for myself, family, friends, community, and now, the world. Stop Settling does not have an ideal state for you to reach. Instead, it challenges you to look at yourself and ask yourself, “What is it that I want for my complete life?” Setting goals and priorities are dependent on your values and relative situations.

Stop Settling discards the idea that the world is broken up into work and life. Life is the wrapper around all of it, including work. Instead, the method splits life into five different facets: Career, Generations (your family), Circle (your friendships), Society (your community), and Vitality (your well-being). Each facet has a unique color and they all fit together to make up your complete life, producing a Life Gem. It’s the visual representation of how you scale in the five facets. The scale the quiz uses stretches from Always Settling to Never Settling to help you rate the importance that each of these facets holds for you. They will not all be equal. You will need to consciously choose how much time and effort you want to put into each one. If you want to know more about the quiz, check this out.

The Phases of Stop Settling

Stop Settling is divided up into 3 phases, The Method, The Mindset, and The Movement.

  1. The Method
    • The Method is the five-question Stop Settling quiz and scale which I discussed above. It is a tool to help you understand what you are aspiring towards and being honest with yourself about what gives you the most enjoyment.
  2. The Mindset
    • The Mindset is the shift in thinking that it is imperative to ask yourself what it is you really want for our quality of life. It’s ditching the should mentality and actively pursuing what you want not what you think you should want.
  3. The Movement
    • The Movement is not only the ability to answer the question, what do I want from my complete life, but also acting on it. The Method and Mindset are tools; the Movement is up to you.

Diamond in the Rough

Just as every diamond is unique, every Stop Setting Life Gem will be as well. It is a reflection of you and your values. It is time to take the rough work-life balance notion and refine it into your own unique Stop Settling Gem.

And don’t forget to keep a lookout for my book, Stop Setting, Settle Smart, coming out on Amazon on 2/5!  All feedback is welcome, I’m new at this so let me know how the tools, tips and traps to avoid are resonating for you.