Today, people as busy and stressed as professionals often do not take the time to check in with themselves periodically about where they are in their lives. They tend not to stop and ask what is giving meaning and value to their lives. Sometimes the idea of doing so is frightening because of what they think they might find.

In my coaching practice, I do meet many professionals who want to make some adjustments to the way they are living. Most of the time the fear is unwarranted because even the smallest adjustment is all that is needed to make a world of difference. It’s not a matter of giving up the life you know. Unless it is a health issue, even when large adjustments are indicated, it is not necessary to make major life changes overnight. Everything can be done gradually, step by step.

Life is a journey and there is something to glean at every stage. In fact, most people live much longer than previous generations and therefore have opportunities to develop and express many aspects of their personalities, talents, and interests.

Take 5 minutes to do the following exercise. I promise the return on that investment (ROI) will be manifold. Simply click on the link to download a 3-page exercise. After you complete the exercise, then finish reading the article.

Finished? Now that the picture of the balance in your life at this moment in time is in front of you, ask yourself which of those areas are priorities to improve and which are fine as they are.

Make a plan and a commitment to take only one or two small steps a week toward getting the balance you want.

Does it mean making a weekly date with your spouse and /or your children? Might you be more careful in the clients you accept? How about phasing out some of those who make you miserable? Does it mean taking brief breaks throughout your day to refresh yourself by focusing on something of interest other than work? Perhaps a time management structure would make a big difference. Would you like to do something spiritual like taking a class or attending religious services? Does it mean developing a hobby or at least subscribing to a magazine featuring an interest of yours? What about music, listening to it more, learning, or playing an instrument? Does it mean planning what you will do in the next stage of your life?

The journey of self-discovery is fascinating because you are so much more than you think you are.