Today’s article is for the high-achievers out there always striving to accomplish more. 

So earlier today, I was on a podcast called “Work Hard Life Hard”.

It’s a show all about work life balance.

I have no idea why they invited me on, cause I don’t have much “balance” in my work and personal life right now. 

Currently, my life is 80% work and 20% everything else.

But you know what? I absolutely love my life. 

And this might be a controversial take but I don’t believe in the idea of perfect work-life balance. First of all, I think to get extraordinary results in anything, you need to be unbalanced and make sacrifices. Doesn’t always have to be that way, but there will be periods of intense focus and “imbalance”. 

BUT what I do believe in, is always being fully immersed and present in whatever you do. Meaning if you decide to grind 14 hours a day, that’s totally fine. But do so consciously, and enjoy it. 

Or if you decide to do nothing and binge TV all day, enjoy the hell out of that too. 

In the past, I used to be so focused on productivity and getting as much done as I possibly could. And what I found was, no matter how many hours I worked, or how many “pomodoros” I completed, I still never felt I was doing enough. I had this ideal I could never reach. And even though I was making more money in a month than most people do all year, I was secretly miserable. 

These days, my criteria for success is simply “Did I feel good about how I spent my time?” 

If yes, then that’s a big win in my book. Regardless of how “productive” I was. 

This week, my productivity completely went out the window. With my wife breaking her arm and our nanny being sick, I had to step up around the house. It’s been impossible to be productive because I’m being interrupted at least once an hour with some sort of request for help. 

But you know what? That’s just my reality right now and there’s not much I can do besides make the most out of it. 

And I’ll take this zen attitude over super optimized productivity any day. To me, self acceptance is more important than self improvement, although I used to believe the opposite. 

Another way to say it is the quality of your moment-to-moment state of mind in life is more important than what you accomplish. 

That’s a lesson I wish I learned many years ago. 

Talk soon,

Tony Wang