How would you choose to design your life?

What, according to you, is a good life? A life of worth? A life that’s fulfilling??

According to Dr Sean Stephenson, life is fulfilling when the three important elements of life… Health, Wealth and Relationships…are well taken care of. Health is about mind, body and soul. Wealth is created from career, jobs, business and Relationships are with self, family, social, community and God. He calls these elements the ‘buckets of life’ which are interconnected. Look at it as a beautiful triangle. When these buckets are full, it remains in balance and radiates bright light.

Now what would happen if too much weight is put on one side? When the pull is on one side, isn’t the shape distorted? Yes, this is what happens when we start focusing on one area of our life and neglect the other buckets. The other areas get impacted because those buckets get dry.

What would happen if the pull is too strong? Why do we let the pull to be stronger on one side?.. lack of clarity of what we really want or lack of prioritization or procrastination or lack of action. Why do we procrastinate? Life comes in the way… work, family, kids, social commitments, fb, whatsapp, email, dishes, appointments, bills…the list is never ending. This impacts most of the things we want to achieve…be it career or work related goals, personal relationships, health… whatever. When this becomes a habit, its dangerous.

Even smart, ambitious, capable, competent professionals fall apart because of a lack of clarity on what they really want, procrastination and not being able to integrate key elements of life. Statistics suggest that 85% – 95% of people procrastinate, of which 25% are chronic.

What happens then? Exhaustion, stress, anxiety, shame, guilt, unhappiness. We beat ourselves up …Yes, LIFE IS EXHAUSTING!!!! Sometimes it feels like it will take every last bit of us, every ounce of our energy, every tiny drop of our strength. I have been there…and it sucks, and the first thing we do is blame our circumstances. We grasp for excuses. Boss is demanding, spouse doesn’t care anymore, children don’t understand, friends don’t have time…I did that. I often looked for excuses when things were not in my favour, when things didn’t go my way. This is being a victim of circumstances. Not a good place to be in.

Honestly, I knew the truth…it’s not always about the circumstances. Many a time…it’s me….When I stopped being a victim of circumstances…things started to change.

David Allen “Author of Getting things done” says, if you are too busy making excuses or too busy thinking that you don’t have the time to do the zillion things, then you will never create the space to understand what you really need to do. It’s important to create the space. It’s in this space we get clarity.

Whether you think you can or cannot you are right, says Henry Ford. When you are clear on what you want and you are willing to do whatever it takes and however long it takes no matter how many times you fall short, which you will, that’s where confidence comes from.

With this mindset you don’t get upset when things don’t go the way you wanted or hoped for. I call this the growth mindset. With this mindset, there is no failure, there is only learning. To quote Nelson Mandela, “I never loose, I either win or learn”. When you choose to learn and rise over the challenges and start taking ownership, you will be able to create the life you want. These shifts and strategies have helped me in my personal and professional life.

Life is about the deliberate choices we make and these choices generate the result.

How would you choose to design your life? And what would life look like when you have made these choices?

Archana Shetty, MBA 2013

Archana Shetty, MBA 2013

About the Author

Archana Shetty works for a large organisation in Qatar. Her role is based in the Group PMO, she leads a multi-cultural team across the glove and manages multi-million critical transformational projects for the organisation. She holds a PMP and an MBA from the University of Bradford. She has two decades of work experience, has been included in the top 3% of the project management experts by Gulf PMA and has been featured in QPWN (Qatar Professional Women’s Network) newsletter for International Women’s Day.


She also coaches and mentors young adults and women to be more productive, energised, happy, and successful and lead an optimal life. Through her programs, she passionately engages with people on career choices and advancement, empowering them to unlock their true potential and achieve their goals. She utilises her experience across IT and project management along with her leadership knowledge and expertise to help clients create significant transformational behavioural changes and achieve measurable success.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *