The tour is drawing to a close. The last game is played today and will be a day and night match in a beautiful stadium in Dhakar. Looking forward to seeing how the team perform.
Our aim on the trip was to experience the sub-continent and how to play in a different environment against top opposition. It was to give us the opportunity to look at the skill levels, tactical ability of the team, the physicality of the team and how mentally tough they are.
It has certainly enabled to do all of these things. It has also allowed us to look at our team identity. How would we describe our team to outsiders – What is it that we want to stand and fight for? This element is still work in progress but will certainly be established before the next series in Australia in a couple of months time.
I was also intrigued to read the following article (see below). This was not a surprise as I often ask people if they had only a moment to live what would they look back on as the most important elements of their life. It pretty much follows the findings contained below. Can we actually have balance in a life where the reality is that we will have to work hard to earn money and probably for most of our lives. Especially if we want achieve anything or is it simply that we prioritise the wrong elements of our life? I absolutely believe we can still achieve our goals in work and life as long as we remember to take a strategic view of our life and then adopt the behaviors to do something about it.
Top five regrets of the dying
A nurse has recorded the most common regrets of the dying, and among the top ones is ‘I wish I hadn’t worked so hard’. What would your biggest regret be if this was your last day of life? (Susie Steiner guardian.co.uk, Wed 1 Feb 2012 11.49 GMT)
There was no mention of more sex or bungee jumps. A palliative nurse who has counselled the dying in their last days has revealed the most common regrets we have at the end of our lives. And among the top, from men in particular, is ‘I wish I hadn’t worked so hard’.
Bronnie Ware is an Australian nurse who spent several years working in palliative care, caring for patients in the last 12 weeks of their lives. She recorded their dying epiphanies in a blog called Inspiration and Chai, which gathered so much attention that she put her observations into a book called The Top Five Regrets of the Dying.
Ware writes of the phenomenal clarity of vision that people gain at the end of their lives, and how we might learn from their wisdom. “When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently,” she says, “common themes surfaced again and again.”
Here are the top five regrets of the dying, as witnessed by Ware:
1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
“This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it.”
2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
“This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret, but as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.”
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
“Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.”
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
“Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.”
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
“This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content, when deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again.”
What’s your greatest regret so far, and what will you set out to achieve or change before you die?
When life is busy, or all your energy is focused on a special project, it’s all too easy to find yourself “off balance,” not paying enough attention to important areas of your life. While you need to have drive and focus if you’re going to get things done, taking this too far can lead to frustration and intense stress.
That’s when it’s time to take a “helicopter view” of your life, so that you can bring things back into balance.
This is where the Wheel of Life (or Life Wheel) can help. Commonly used by professional life coaches, it helps you consider each area of your life in turn and assess what’s off balance. And so, it helps you identify areas that need more attention. The elements could include – finance/health/fitness/personal development/relationships/work/hobbies/friendships etc.
The Wheel of Life is powerful because it gives you a vivid visual representation of the way your life is
currently, compared with the way you’d ideally like it to be. It is called the “Wheel of Life” because each area of your life is mapped on a circle, like the spoke of a wheel. Have a look at www.mindtools.com to show you how to draw your wheel of life.
1. Start by brainstorming the 6 to 8 dimensions of your life that are important for you. Different approaches to this are:
- The roles you play in life for example: husband/wife, father/mother, manager, colleague, team member, sports player, community leader, or friend.
- Areas of life that are important to you for example: artistic expression, positive attitude, career, education, family, friends, financial freedom, physical challenge, pleasure, or public service.
- Your own combination of these (or different) things, reflecting the things that are your priorities in life.
2. Write down these dimensions on the Wheel of Life diagram, one on each spoke of the life wheel.
3. This approach assumes that you will be happy and fulfilled if you can find the right balance of attention for each of these dimensions. And different areas of your life will need different levels of attention at different times. So the next step is to assess the amount of attention you’re currently devoting to each area.
4. Consider each dimension in turn, and on a scale of 0 (low) to 5 (high), write down the amount of attention you’re devoting to that area of your life. Mark each score on the appropriate spoke of you Life Wheel.
5. Now join up the marks around the circle. Does you life wheel look and feel balanced?
6. Next it’s time to consider your ideal level in each area of your life. A balanced life does not mean getting 5 in each life area: some areas need more attention and focus than others at any time. And inevitably you will need to make choices and compromises, as your time and energy are not in unlimited supply!
7. So the question is, what would the ideal level of attention be for you in each life area?
8. Plot the “ideal” scores around your life wheel too.
9. Now you have a visual representation of your current life balance and your ideal life balance. What are the gaps? These are the areas of your life that need attention.
- And remember that gaps can go both ways. There are almost certainly areas that are not getting as much attention as you’d like. However there may also be areas where you’re putting in more effort than you’d ideally like. These areas are sapping energy and enthusiasm that may better be directed elsewhere.
- Once you have identified the areas that need attention, it’s time to plan the actions needed to work on regaining balance. Starting with the neglected areas, what things do you need to start doing to regain balance? In the areas that currently sap your energy and time, what can you STOP doing or reprioritize or delegate to someone else? Make a commitment to these actions by writing them on your worksheet.
Tip: You can use the Wheel of Life as preparation for goal setting or coaching. It helps identify the areas you want to work on and is a great way of visualizing your current and desired life. Once you are working on improving your life balance, it’s also a useful tool for monitoring your life balance as it changes over time.
The Wheel of Life is a great tool to help you improve your life balance. It helps you quickly and graphically identify the areas in your life to which you want to devote more energy, and helps you understand where you might want to cut back.
The challenge now is to transform this knowledge and desire for a more balanced life into a positive program of action.