A host of factors, developments, and dynamics have made most industries more competitive than ever. As a result so many of us wonder whether there is still such a thing as work-life balance. We reached out to the community to hear perspectives on finding the right balance.

Derek Kamal | Teacher/Writer

Work/life balance is the ever-shifting target. I was just asked today, “How do you find time to do it?” and the fact is kind of don’t. I stumble upon time, rather than find it. On a good week the inspiration is there to drive me into that time, and that is when the most work gets done. The rest of the time it’s a matter of grabbing a moment by the scruff and getting what you can out of it in between rest and family time. One important factor is to understand oneself and interrupt one’s bad habits. I have a habit of procrastinating if I’m not “feeling it,” so having a writer’s group or inviting collaborators or other such forces will cause me to interrupt myself so that I *have* to do a bit of writing. The foil to this is being in charge: if I’m the one controlling the project, I can cancel my own deadlines, so that is important to avoid. Read more>>

Jamela Staten | Owner, Pastry Chef & Engineer

Work life balance has played such a major role in my life. I have a full time job during the day and at times I come home and take on bakery orders. There have been times that I have gotten home from work at 10pm, went to sleep, up by 3 am completing bakery orders, and then being back at my full time job by 8am , after doing deliveries all morning. I will only take orders that I know I can handle, i will not overload myself and take away from my artistry because of money. If I can only make one cake that week then so be it. I have learned and have mastered balance in my professional and personal life. There are times where I will shut down all operations and go on vacation for 2 weeks. Decompression is needed a lot in this business. I would get so overwhelmed with orders that I would call out of work to complete them. Read more>>

Lakecia Walker | Boutique Owner/Tour Popup Host

Work life balance is extremely important! When I started my business, I was working a full time job, mom and wife. There were many nights I went to bed with my laptop because once I got home from my corporate job it was time to put in the work for my business. There were nights I would go to bed 2 and 3 am and have to be right back up at 6:30am however I was determined to put the necessary work to grow my brand. Finally I realized after my husband told me not to bring the laptop to bed lol that I had to find balance. My daughter played sports which occupied a lot of our time and my husband was traveling back and forth to Alaska before he decide to retire early and pursue full time entrepreneur. I had to find balance for my family, work and business and I did! Read more>>

Darryl Bordenave | Fashion Designer & Creative Director

Work life balance can be tough! You have to have mental and self discipline to go to work then come home and work for yourself. In my case its vice versa. I work for myself from home in the morning then I go to work at night to fund my business. I’m really dedicated to my dream and GOD given vision so that keeps me disciplined. Time management is a big factor also. You have to be strict with yourself because you can get so caught up in your that you forget to rest, eat or workout. Your everyday schedule has to be planned out precisely. Read more>>

Stello Clark | Music Professional

Aww man. I’m working now more than I ever have haha. The balance question is always tricky because I sincerely love what I do and most of the people I work with are my actual friends. I feel like I’m hanging out and being productive all at once. It’s a part of my life I want to constantly be involved in. I’m always looking for new projects to take on. That being said, over time I’ve had to force myself to take breaks. Even though I enjoy my work it’s still very possible to run myself into the ground and be completely exhausted. I build in at least one off day every week. I make myself sit down, watch Netflix, read something, or simply do nothing. Outside of sleeping, sometimes the body and mind just need rest! The other thing I do is take breaks. Usually a hectic day or week means nonstop work. Read more>>

Marley Wolf | Singer/Songwriter/Producer

I’m big on balance. I believe balance equals peace. Fortunately my business revolves around what has always kept me balanced. My art is my way of exhausting the negativity & even the anxiety that comes with just being human. I’ve cultivated my place in the spectrum of peace & chaos. That’s what it boils down to. It’s about where you fall on the spectrum of peace & chaos. Read more>>

Stylist April B | Mom first then Celebrity Natural Hair Artist & Loctician and Serial Entrepreneur

Work life balance is sooooooo important. There was a time where I literally worked 12 hours a day, 7 days a week. I barely saw my kids and it took a serious toll on me and my family. I always thought a vacation would be taking away from a bill that needed to be paid. I then started working smarter and not harder. I created additional streams of income in which I am now afforded the opportunity to vacation often. You have to have balance because you will work yourself to death with hardly anything to show for it. The bills will still be there. The clients, the family and whatever else will still be there when you return. I now take one weekend a month for me to go somewhere and decompress. I feel so refreshed and recharged after doing so. Read more>>

Jkarlon Harrison | Serial Entrepreneur

I am someone who finds it easy to tap into tunnel vision. I can get submerged in a topic or project completely and will forget to eat, ruin my sleep schedule and probably not talk to a lot of people. Not on purpose but because I’m just so interested in what I’m doing. I found that is the easiest way for me to learn something new but more recently I’ve been able to pull myself out of that trance when it gets too unhealthy- for too long. Im coming to respect a well rounded lifestyle more than being a burnt out baller because it makes my body feel better.. Read more>>

Laura Douglas | Brand Designer & Illustrator

Over the years, I have learned to always end the work day with some sort of exercise. After a certain point in the day, my work efficiency and drive runs can run a little dry. It’s at this point that I know I need to change pace and get away from the screen in order to restore my sense of balance and peace. I find that allowing myself the time to get outside and go for a walk is so beneficial for my mind and body. Read more>>

Shantella Shorter | Flight Attendant, Treat maker, & Silk press slayer

Whew, let’s talk about balance, and how I’m still trying to figure it all out. I’m a flight attendant, so of course that means I’m always on the go. I’m literally living out of a suitcase, but my job is super fun, so I make it work. When I’m not flying, I’m at home either dipping treats, or doing hair. I started making treats in 2017. My friend Jessica, needed some white chocolate covered strawberries for her moms birthday, and me being the one that will take on anything, I said I could do them. Of course I’ve never dipped a strawberry before, “How hard could it be”, is what I thought to myself. Fast forward, I’ve been dipping treats since. In 2018, I made it official, “Sweet Dipped Treats.” When it comes to doing hair, that’s something I’ve always done. I would do my god sisters hair, or my little cousins hair when they’d come over. Read more>>

Mariana Thomas: Entrepreneur/coach/speaker/trainer/ Self-Development/Health/Wellness and Mindfulness expert

“Work life balance” it’s useless. I believe finding “harmony” in life is the true balance. I have leaved through this process and know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s impossible to find “work life balance” If you give too much attention to your work then your home life suffers and vice versa. We can get a bit caught and attached to one specific thing that can throw us out of balance. Read more>>

Andi Brotten | Podcaster, Artist, & Writer

I used to have a pretty good balance, and then I became a mom. Now my life balance is more of a juggle. I think about balance now as getting as much work done during nap times and night times. We all have the same amount of hours in the day. I have to set priorities some days. And the balancing comes somedays by just spending time with my son and getting enough sleep. While some days I can be productive and get three projects done with the sacrifice of some sleep. Read more>>