I doubt that any of this Rhythm of Life (ROL) information is relevant to many under 35. It was around that age that I first noticed that my pants were a little tighter than usual and for the first time ever I thought about having to watch myweight. I also noticed my hair receding and that Idid not bounce back as easily from 3 post-midnight bedtimes in a row. My wife and I had 3 children, work was very busy and life was very full. For me it was the onset of middle age and I have to admit it was a little scarey!
It was in this period that I began to develop bad habits. Between work and family commitments I had no time for myself and so my emotional and physical health suffered. I stopped doing any regular exercise, I put on weight and found myself continually tired and often just functioning. I just put it down to busyness and having a young family but patterns were developing that became quite disastrous for someone like me with a strong work ethic who wore his busyness as a badge of honour.
Mostly ROL is something that business and professional people become interested in in their 40’s and particularly in the 5 years leading up to 50. It is said that how you prepare yourself in the 5 years leading up to 50 will determine the success or otherwise of the rest of your life.
Rhythm of Life refers to the unique natural rhythms that are part of all our lives. The more aware you are and cooperate with your rhythm of life the better you will manage your energy levels for peak performance at work and to enable you to have energy for your family and for things you love to do.
Rhythm of Life in the Workplace
The core of this concept is that each person has capacity to work hard for between 25 and 35 days (assuming at least one day off per week is maintained, regular sleep and exercise, and normal annual holidays are taken). After the 25 – 35 day period it is important to have a 2-3 day period where there is low demand so you can relax, disengage and replenish at a deeper level. Without this extra mini break it becomes harder to replenish in sleep and regular days off, and without doubt productivity at work is diminished.
Everyone has a rhythm of life!
None of us is a machine. Even people of high capacity who seem to be always on the go have days when they have less energy and less ability to focus than they would ideally like, while on other days they seem to have limitless energy.
I realise that each of us has a unique journey of self discovery. Your rhythm of life will be different to mine. However you do have a rhythm of life and my belief is that the more you are aware of it and as much as possible cooperate with it, the more productive you will be. Also you will be less likely to suffer from burnout or other stress induced illness.
This is a journey of self discovery which will allow you to become more self aware, more emotionally intelligent and more personally present in any given moment.
In my experience this journey requires: a willingness to grow and change, a skilled mentor to assist you, a commitment to self reflection and time. If you are in a busy leadership role it could take you up to 2 years to be able to read and fully cooperate with the rhythms of your life.
For me, this has been quite a journey, but well worth it for the outcomes I have seen some of which include: greater capacity and energy for peak performance, energy to enjoy family times, able to get to the end of the year and enjoy a fun holiday rather than being totally exhausted, greater creativity, finding regular ways to replenish physically and emotionally, and the ability to be far more emotionally present and focused in any given situation.
I’d love to hear your comments and questions about your Rhythm of Life.