Why can't I have it all? | Illusive work-life balance

Ever heard people say you can have it all? Today I'd like to really dig deep and challenge this concept because I think it is a completely flawed and unhealthy concept.

Whoever you are, here's what I'd like to say to you: what matters, in my opinion, “having it all” is that ‘all’ is what is important to YOU. There is no one definition.

With that in mind, I’d like to share what I personally found useful during my own life journey so far:

I've been hit with a very big realization recently - No, I can't have it all.

In fact, I came across an article about this man called Mohamed El-Erian, an ex CEO

It's really not a question about time management or not being productive enough, it is a matter of me being the high-achiever that I am, I have so many aspirations and dreams that I want to excel in, and a part of me wants to excel in them all simultaneously, but the reality is, I am only human in the end. I only have 24 hours in a day. I have limitations that I have to accept, whether I like it or not.

Recently, I've been putting extra pressure on myself, wanting to achieve many projects for my business, managing work, clients, writing my book, while trying to be an attentive wife and loving mom.

In my dreams, that is such a beautiful vision.

But in reality, it's a load of unrealistic lies.

When I invest more time and energy into my businesses, my marriage started to suffer and my child would get more "wild" around me just to try and get my attention.

To give you some background about my life, I didn't come from a rich family. My parents worked their butts off to make sure my brother and I got food to eat everyday, had nice clothes to wear, and every necessary thing that we needed in life. For all that they have done for me, I am and will be forever grateful.

However, by them trying to give me a comfortable life, it came at a cost - a high opportunity cost of not being able to spend time with their daughter (me)

During my teenage years, I was disappointed with my father especially, for being away for most parts of my life. He didn't know who my friends were, what I liked to eat, what kind of music I liked, or what colour I liked. But back then, I didn't understand the concept of "opportunity costs" or that he was trying to make ends meet. All I knew was, he wasn't around much for me, my mom or brother.

Now that I'm a businesswoman and a mom, I find myself living a sort of Deja Vu moment, except now the roles are switched and I am the parent.

If any of you watching this has worked with a life coach before, chances are you might be familiar with the Wheel of Life.

The Wheel of Life is a simple but powerful tool that helps you visualize all the important areas of your life at once. It consists of health, physical environment (such as possessions), finances, career, romance, personal growth, family & friends, and fun & recreation.

Here's the hard truth which is really hard for high-achievers like me to accept: Anytime you excel in one area of your life, another part of your life will suffer. Eg...

The aim is therefore, to try and achieve a somewhat leveled balance in all aspects of your life.

Which brings me to the bitter question I ask myself: Why can't I have it all?

Yes, I have moments where I'm sour with myself, or my life circumstances, and I think I'm perhaps not pushing myself enough. But all these negative thoughts, just makes me feel worse and more bitter with life.

At the end of these bitter moments, I then hit myself on the head and remind myself that, "Trish, God damn it, you are doing the best you can with the time and resources that you have. I have no parents around or grandparents around to help me with my child, it is purely up to your husband and you to manage between work and trying to be a good parent."

But why in the world do I want so much out of life? What made me such a high-achiever?

The answer is this, back in the day, thousands of years ago, if you were born into a family who worked as fishermen, you won't question what your destiny would be. Chances are you'll just take on the role as a fisherman and that would be that. You wouldn't think of seeking new horizons because for the most part, you weren't aware that there are other opportunities.

Nowadays, with the presence of the internet and social media, we become more aware of what is out there in the world to discover, to enjoy and to possibly have. Which brings about FOMO and the evil "comparing yourself to others" syndrome.

Some key questions which have helped pulled me out of a dark self-pity hole, and to put some perspective and balance back in my life are:

  1. What really matters to me? Family? Career? Business? Personal Growth? Money? Health?

  2. Realistically, based on my current circumstances, what am I able to achieve that will give me a level of acceptable satisfaction on all areas of my life?

  3. What do I need to let go of in order to rescue another area of my life that is suffering?

The last question is a big one. More often than not, it is not that we don't know what to do in order to restore peace in our lives, it is more a matter of the unwillingness to let go of people or things which doesn't serve us.

One step that I am taking to regain balance in my life right now, is by letting go of one of my businesses. (It is now bought over by @blackmondstudios) As painful as it is, because I really care for my businesses like a baby. I started them from scratch all by myself and nurtured them to grow slowly over the years. I am in the midst of discussing a deal to sell off one of my Instagram business accounts. Like I said, it is painful, but necessary.

Moral of the story is, as much as it is beautiful to have dreams, it is equally important to know your limitations and most of all - remind yourself where your priorities lie, use that as your compass and shape your life around it.

Once you’ve watched today's episode, I’d love to hear from you.

Do you believe a person can have it all? Is it really possible? Do share your thoughts and experience in the comments below.

Share as much detail as you can. Many lovely souls come here for insight and inspiration. Your story may be just what someone else needs to have a major breakthrough.

I really hope you found today's episode helpful and it gives you the courage to know that it is perfectly ok not to have it all and still be happy. Know what matters to you, focus on it, and nurture it. Good things will blossom.

If you're ready to take your career to the next level and looking for professional career advise, schedule a free 30-mins session with me to find out more about how I can help you achieve your career goals successfully.

Thank you so much for watching, sharing, and adding your thoughts. Best of luck in your career.

Live strong, and have the courage to create a life you love because your happiness matters.

With SO much 💖,


P.S. Have a question you’d love to ask me? Do give me your Q on my page Ask Trish Anything and I'll personally get back to you with some empowering steps to help guide you through your challenges. I look forward to serve and help you towards a brighter future, a future you've always dreamt of. Do give me your Q here.

Knowing when to ask for help and guidance is not weakness. If anything, it's a strength.

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