Your Life is Like a WheelAug 13, 2021
By Ilana Jankowitz.
Your life is like a wheel on a bike, with eight spokes dividing the inner wheel. In order for the wheel on a bike to turn smoothly, each section needs to be balanced, otherwise you end up having a very bumpy and uncomfortable ride!
It’s exactly the same with your life. Each of these spokes represents a different area of your life. If each area isn’t working in harmony, then you can feel unbalanced, and life seems hard.
The Wheel of Life
‘The Wheel of Life’ is a brilliant exercise that encourages you to look at each area of your life and rate how you currently feel about it. This allows you to see your life at a glance and understand where you need to put more of your focus in order to bring things into balance.
Take a piece of paper and a pen and draw a circle, then divide the circle into eight sections.
Next to each section mark the following categories:
- Lifestyle and environment/home
- Money and finances
- Purpose, profession, your job
- Family, friendships, partnerships
- Vitality and fitness
- Adventure and fun
- Values, meaning, spirituality, mindfulness
All eight categories are equally important and necessary for your wheel to rotate smoothly. If one section is not doing too well, it will affect all the other areas.
Rate them from 1 to 10
Mark each spoke in your wheel from 1 to 10, with 1 near the middle and 10 on the outer rim. Then, looking at each of the sections, ask yourself how you feel about them – how important is each to you? And give each one a rating on your 1-10 scale.
Once you have each section rated, it’s time to look at how you can improve those lower scored areas to a more desired level.
Lifestyle and environment/home
When you walk into your home, what does it say about you? How does it make you feel? Is there clutter everywhere? Are the colours and textures inspiring – do they raise or drain your energy?
Your home is your sanctuary and even more so now if you’re working in a home office. Are you still sitting on a wobbly uncomfortable chair that you’ve been using since last March? Do you have fresh flowers in your home? Do you have essential oil diffusers lit? Does everything have a place, or is your office a dumping ground?
Think about what you can do to make it more serene and calm, and a place that you love and would give a 10 out of 10 to.
Money and finances
Do you know what’s going on with your finances? Are you keeping a budget? If you are, when did you last look at it or look in your account?
If you have debt, have you contacted your bank and asked for any help clearing it down? There are lots of people now going through difficult times because of job losses or reduced hours. Banks are generally understanding of people’s individual circumstances, so consider asking for a mortgage holiday or for a lower interest rate.
I know there’s also government help in most countries too.
Purpose, profession, your job
Are you really living your true purpose and doing what makes you happy? If not, what can you change?
If you’re looking for a job right now, have you used your networks to their fullest to help you? It’s okay to ask for help, so be bold, not shy, and reach out to people. So often in life it’s not what you know, but who you know!
If you have your own business, are you spending enough time in the areas that make you money? It’s so easy to get distracted with ‘stuff’! Making time on a Sunday for creating your to-do list and setting your goals for the week ahead is a game-changer. As well as getting things down on paper, consider time blocking to ensure you get things done. Set an hour to do a task, and then, once completed, give yourself a little reward.
The most important thing here is to figure out what works for you so that by the end of the week you’ve actually moved forward in your business, and not simply gone through the motions. Remember, being busy doesn’t make you money!
Family, friendships, partnerships
Our families are the practice space for the real world and how we deal with people. This is one of the hardest sections to get all the way up to a 10!
If your family are around, try to make a concerted effort to be kind and understanding with them. And prioritise making time for them. I’ve lost three brothers and I miss them every single day. The reality is you can’t go back in time – all you have is right now and the future, and the future is guaranteed to no one!
Friendships always appear to me to be a lot easier to balance than family. I believe we have three types of friendships. There are those for a season, some for a reason, and others who are with us for a lifetime.
I can’t stress enough how important it is to nurture your family, friendships, and partnerships, and to cherish them and be grateful for them every day.
We all know that a healthy body is the number one driver that moves your wheel forward. So, what number are you giving your health right now? Can you improve on your rating? What do you need to do to make it a 10?
I always find it helpful to break health down into subsections: sleep, exercise, mindfulness, nutrition, water, sunshine, and attitude.
Now look honestly at how healthy each section is …
- Are you sleeping peacefully?
- How many hours of sleep do you get?
- Are you moving and getting exercise?
- Do you do any mindfulness, gratitude, journaling, yoga and/or breathing techniques?
- How is your diet?
- Do you drink 8-10 glasses of water per day?
- If there is no sunshine, do you supplement with extra vitamin D?
Remember, your attitude is everything and sets the tone for how you feel about your life.
Vitality and fitness
What number are you here? There are so many people you can speak to if you feel you’re not close to the number you want to be. Can you do a bit more activity? A great motivator for doing fitness is to find a friend to do it with. Maybe go for a walk or do a yoga class together.
Adventure and fun
How much fun and adventure are you having in your life? Can you have more? This is something that we all say we want, but so often don’t take the steps to ensure we get it.
Keep it simple! You could watch a comedy show and have a good laugh. When was the last time you really laughed? Laughter, adventure, and fun are like balm for your soul.
Values, meaning, spirituality, mindfulness
How are you ranking here? Do you have a daily spiritual practice? For example, do you meditate, write down or speak about the things you’re grateful for, or journal?
If you find sitting for a long time difficult because your mind wanders, try a guided meditation. You might like to try Deepak Chopra’s 21-day guided meditation on Grace and Gratitude.
The Wheel of Life is an exercise I have my clients do regularly because it’s a simple yet powerful way to track their progress. Give yourself the gift of completing your own and creating a roadmap for what you’re going to do to raise your numbers all the way up to 10s in each area.
If you’d like support and guidance with creating your plan, my Money Quiz is a great place to start. Once you’ve taken the quiz, book yourself into my diary for a free follow-up call, and we can start mapping your plan out together.
Ilana Jankowitz is a certified Money Coach born and raised in South Africa and currently residing in Zurich. Her work is all about identifying behavioural patterns around money, transforming negative thinking and moving from a self-destructive mindset to one that is positive and inspiring.
She is passionate about helping women to break free from self-doubt, low self-esteem and lack of self-confidence and move towards financial liberation and she can help you too with her free money quiz. You can read all about Ilana and her work here or on any of my social pages Facebook | LinkedIn | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube
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