Healthy work-life balance can be difficult for anyone to attain, but what if you're the mother of a toddler and a 6-month-old baby, a CEO with a roster of high-profile clients, and the sister and former employee of one of Silicon Valley's most famous billionaires? That's Randi Zuckerberg, who puts herself out there when it comes to her career. Since stepping down as director of marketing for Facebook in 2011 she has founded her own media company, written a couple of books, produced a much-hyped but short-lived reality show, and spoken at several business and tech conferences.
Today, you'll find her opining about the complexities of living a wired life via her radio show on SiriusXM and her website Dot Complicated. Zuckerberg Media's latest project? Fairfield Inn and Suites, which hired her as spokesperson for something the company called "National Amazing Month," a marketing campaign that involved conducting a survey in which it asked 1,400 people about who helps them stay amazing. Armed with the survey data meshed with her personal experience, here's Zuckerberg's advice on the best ways to keep a sane balance between your personal and work lives.
1. Ask for help.
You can't be a successful business person and amazing parent while staying physically fit without some help from your network. But you need to ask for it. "The only way we can really achieve balance in our lives is to surround ourselves with incredible people who help us get that balance and help us realize our dreams," she says.
2. Express your appreciation.
Zuckerberg says that she often talks with businesses about the morale-boosting value of showing employees gratitude, but it's important to express appreciation to people outside of work as well. "As a society we tend to forget that acknowledging people matters a lot," she says.
3. Notice the kindness of strangers.
Respondents to Fairfield's survey ranked partners and pets as important sources of support, but Zuckerberg says she was surprised to see that random acts of kindness from strangers ranked higher in value than interactions with online friends. "So people actually get more of a sense of happiness or sense of fulfillment from a stranger being kind to them-a barista at the coffee shop giving them a smile, someone holding a door open for them-than they might even necessarily get from interactions online," she says.
4. Be intentional about how you use your devices.
Anyone with a smartphone knows how helpful they can be on myriad levels. Yet, being head down to a device can keep you from forming deep personal relationships and make others feel as if you're not listening or paying attention to them. Don't be that person and mind how and when you use technology. "[A]re you just kind of mindlessly snacking and scrolling through feeds when you don't have to be?" she asks. "Make sure that you're really present in a moment, you're not that person who's texting or glancing at your phone at the dinner table. And take breaks when you're mindfully putting the phone down and away, and unplugging."
5. Don't expect to be great at everything, every day.
"As long as it balances out in the long run, it's OK if some days you're very focused on your family, other days you're very focused on your job, other days you're very focused on yourself," she says. "I think it's OK to be, well, lopsided some days."