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10 Life lessons on trying to find work life balance from Sandie Luna

Published on January 21, 2016 12:00 AM EST
Life lessons on trying to find work life balance

Insight from any given situation allows us to learn, to recognize the wisdom from life’s experiences.  While growing has its unavoidable pains, paying attention to what we find along the way can help us avoid repeating mistakes.

Though life happens, no matter what, I find the friends we meet make the journey so sweet and memorable that we even love the bruises and bumps during the journey.

Life lessons on trying to find work life balance

On PUNTO and partnerships

As an artist, startup co-founder, and mother, I don’t find a shortage of inspiring everyday heroes. But my dear friend Debora Balardini is atop my list of inspiring everyday she-roesDebora is my collaborative artistic partner of 10 years and my business partner at PUNTO Space, the event and performance space we created to support artists.

Debora routinely motivates me. Not only for the work she’s put into the event and performance venue we dreamed up together years ago, or the artists’ collective we co-founded that just had its 10-year anniversary, but on a daily basis. I see an artist that goes out of her way to support others, a talented theater director, and a mother that cares for her family.

On work life balance and living out dreams

I am reminded that work life balance is influenced by being consistently exposed to loving leadership, strength, laughter, and the ability to collaborate to build long-term dreams.

In this regard, I credit my top 10 life lessons, in part, to my own will, intolerance to being boxed in, and my sense of unyielding creative curiosity.


Life lessons on trying to find work life balance

1. Embrace your way; it’s a direct route to your power and ability to make progress.

Knowing yourself and your strengths can unlock a wealth of possibilities in how you approach everyday challenges. We all have different styles to even the simplest of tasks. It’s best to know what works for you, than to try and fit into the way that it has been done by the majority.

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This theory is also useful when it comes to living out your dreams and approaching life’s biggest hurdles.

2. It’s okay to surrender, that means you are human.

A lot of energy can be saved by taking off the armor. No one can be a warrior all the time. Surrendering can be just as exhilarating as screaming your way into battle, because both are about jumping into an experience with an open heart.

I arrived at this with every theater project I produce, or co-create, and each PUNTO decision that demands complex problem-solving skills.

3. Don’t be afraid to go creatively crazy.

Everyone should find time to ‘lose’ it every morning – that’s what one of my theater mentors said.  Letting loose creatively creates balance. Walking down uneven and scary paths is a way of tuning and balancing your inner life.

Let the demons, fantasies, obsessions, and passions fly! It’s easier said than done, until you do it once with your all. Greeted by the walls of our three-level event venue, we turn up the music and shake it up every morning.

It helps us break the ice, laugh a little at ourselves and each other, by being silly. By creating a space that is connected and playful, it feels a little easier to build and grow as a team.

4. Family is something that you can’t just replace; hold your loved ones close.

There’s a Spanish saying: Platano maduro no vuelve a verde (a yellow plantain never turns green again).  The time with family – blood and chosen – is my biggest fortune. I work hard, but when it comes time to be with my loved ones, my focus is solely on them, because life is fragile.

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One regret I want to avoid is not expressing my love sufficiently. As a mother, this is especially true. My son grows and changes every day; I don’t want to miss a beat of his dimple and sweet cheeks.

5. Using resources can activate stagnant areas of your life.

It is proven that our quality of life is directly tied to what kind of network we have to fall back on. It takes work, but for long-term results, it’s important to design what you need if you don’t already have it.

Making connections, developing relationships, and collaborating, is like turning on a circuit panel. Once the power is turned on, sparks can fly. Once we experience success in changing the direction of our lives, success can be sought with more freedom; and work life balance will just follow.

6. Having dreams is important; but shaping and sharing them is a life-long commitment. 

Don’t stop dreaming. Although it’s important to have dreams, something I learned from working in the theatre, is to not to be too precious about ideas. They are a readily available commodity. The real treasure is the boldness and courage to run with them, and the hard work to make them happen. Dream, but as the saying goes, rinse and repeat.

7. You could be given gifts you wished for, even if you don’t remember them.

When you’ve put the time into intentions, hoping, wishing, and taking practical steps to build your dreams, consider that they will come true. Be ready for them.

It’s one thing to put so much time and energy into your aspirations. Don’t ignore or devalue any innate gifts. It is easy to look to the left and the right, seeing what others can do better than we can. But the gifts we have are the real tools to personal realization.

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8. Lead with love.

Through confusion, anger, or exhaustion, always go back to the fountain of why we are here: love.

9. Tending to details is good, hiding and getting lost in them isn’t. 

Work life balance is all about keeping the big picture in your sights.

10. Celebrate life with lots of laughter.

It’s a life-long challenge for me, but I work hard to remember that perfection lives next door to inaction.  The world doesn’t want you to be perfect. The world wants you to express who you are.

Be as unusual, provocative, quirky, or weird as you want to because that is what makes life worth living! Any energy spent on being “normal” and “fitting in” is energy that didn’t get a creative outlet. Life is about leaving your mark…and it is not a penmanship notebook with neat lines to fill in. It’s a blank canvas – so give it texture!

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