Photo by Thomas Hawk via Flickr

One of the greatest challenges that we are facing today is finding the right balance between work and home.

There are so many demands placed on leaders that finding this balance can be difficult, especially if it isn’t consciously managed.

In addition, we can seduce ourselves into thinking that more meetings, interstate travel and work-related events are more glamorous than the seemingly mundane life of changing nappies, loud and messy kids and a spouse who is demanding more from you.

However, we need to change this perspective.

David O. McKay helps us when he says, “No other success can compensate for failure in the home.”

I think that he’s right.

If you genuinely want to be a great leader and a person of influence, it should start within your own four walls.

If you want to be able to reflect back on your life with great satisfaction, stop chasing money and start chasing your kids.

Ironically, if you want to feel better about your achievements at work, make sure that everything is OK at home first.

We always reap what we sow and in very few places is this more evident than in the family home.

Your kids may say that they want the latest gadgets, but what they really need is time spent with you.   Don’t deprive them of this basic human necessity.

Whilst your boss may raise his eye-brows when you leave the office earlier than everyone else, who are you trying to impress?  If you’re more interested in the opinion of your manager than your own family, there’s a problem.

For those in ministry, this can become an issue of extra importance for two main reasons:

  • We need to be role-modelling family life to those around us.
  • We can easily rationalise to ourselves that “God’s work” has a higher priority.  To that, I would suggest that God’s work begins at home.  I’ve seen too many pastor’s kids go off the rails due to emotional neglect from their parents (especially dads) to come to any other conclusion.  1 Timothy 3:5 says, “If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?”  The order is important – family first, then church.

Place boundaries around your family time and protect them fiercely!

If you, like me are aspiring to become a better leader, then I would challenge you to become a more effective leader at home.

Instead of solely reading books about leadership at work, why not try something about how to be a better parent or spouse?

Instead of calling for another meeting that isn’t going to achieve anything, why not spend consistent time with your family in a way that will make a difference?

It’s said that no-one on their death-bed wishes that they spent more time in the office.

Let’s make sure that we don’t regret how we balanced our life.

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