Some people call it work/life balance. Others call it compromise. Still others may say prioritizing. Whatever you call it the result is that there are things we give up along the way. When I first started traveling for work it was all weekday trips meaning I would be home over the weekend. So, I didn't miss many of my sons’ weekend activities. But I did miss the weekday opportunity of 'spontaneous parenting'. I wrote an essay on this a few years back called, "Hey Dad" which described my feelings of not being around (due first to travel and then to separation) when one of my sons could just yell down from his room, "Hey Dad, can you come up and help me with something?" But that's one of the things we give up along the way. But it's not just family matters that are affected. When we travel, we can't commit to things that occur on a regular basis: taking a class, volunteering, joining a band or just having some regular routine in our lives versus our work life. We all have to give up certain things along the way and at some point, looking back, we may regret what we gave up or what we compromised on mainly in the spirit of our careers. But one of the things that I learned from "The Power of Now" is to forgive myself for the past....for the past mistakes, for the past bad behavior, for missing out on the things I'd given up along the way because thinking about those things can 'make you crazy and old before your time' (Crosby, Stills & Nash from 'You Don't Have To Cry'). And the same holds true for the future. "Who knows what tomorrow may bring?" (Traffic) And trying to imagine what the future holds can also drive us crazy. That's why living in the moment, focusing on doing the best we can with what today offers us, accepting what is, no longer paddling upstream has lifted a burden off my shoulders. I can't go back and recapture things I gave up along the way. But I certainly can capture those things that present themselves to me today and all the future todays I have left.
On the road....
2/17-19: Raleigh/Durham for meetings and to be a judge in the UNC Kenan-Flagler Real Estate Challenge