Don't just build your work resume, work on your Life Resume
How do you improve your work resume? You develop skills. You gain experience in important areas. You make accomplishments.
Here's the question though - many of us are concerned with developing a better work resume. We continually upgrade and update it. We spend so much time and effort into planning our work resume. Yet work is just one part of our lives.
What about our life resumes?
The challenge to write a better life resume helped Jesse Itzler find balance as he shaped his life, to not only find accomplishments at work, but experiences in life that makes living truly worthwhile.
"That’s why experiences are so important, especially experiences you do with others. Right now I can call and count on people who I have deep connections with, not because I bought them a bagel and followed up with a thank-you email. It’s because I have true connections, moments if you will, and experiences that will last a lifetime. If you ever climb Mount Washington with someone, they’ll be your friend for life. An experience is like making a deposit in the bank. We can draw on it at any time.”
What were some of these experiences that Itzler talks about? Well, he lived and trained with a most extreme-minded Navy Seal (yes, you guessed it, a certain David Goggins). He spent a month living with monks. He ran 100 mile race. He dedicated time to climbing mountains with his kids. He pursued these experiences to develop himself as a person, to forge deeper friendships with people, and to formulate some of the best memories of his life.
(Itzler captured some of these experiences in his books, "Living with Seal" and "Living with Monks", both great for casual reading. Both books also feature some of his ideas at tackling problems (for example, buying all the muffins at a TED Conference, and then offering them for free in exchange for a chance for a chat).
But how can we balance out so many requirements in life - our work, our families, our life interests?
Itzler provides some advice. And bear in mind that he and his wife both run businesses, and they have 4 young kids to take care of. So how does he find the time?
"I realized that if I take just one hour of personal time a day for the next thirty years, I’ll gain about 11,000 hours of “me” time. That’s over one full year and a quarter of "me" time. Imagine freeing up an entire year to do what you want."
In other words, he puts aside some time every day solely dedicated to his "life resume". We don't need to "spend" this one hour every day - we can accumulate the "me time" to afford enough time to say go on say a weekend trip. Once he made his life resume a priority, Itzler found ways to pursue the activities he wanted to, while fulfilling his work and family obligations.
For example, since both him and his wife subscribes to the idea of life resumes, it allows the couple to manage their parental duties; they are able to plan ahead for when one parent is taking his/her "me time" so that the other parent can make arrangements to take care of their kids.
What experiences would we be able to write on our life resume? We should definitely give this more thought.