Wheel of Life
Happy New Year! After the upheaval of 2020, in many ways January 2021 feels like a reset: an opportunity to start again. For many of us, the challenges of 2020 shaved off the “extras”, helping us to clarify what actually matters to us and to humanity, and what we truly value. A reset is a chance to “debug” the system, to troubleshoot and fix the issues so our life will run more smoothly and efficiently.
What makes a reset important? We, and the world around us, are in a state of constant fluctuation. We change, and life changes. We learn and grow and shift, and technology quickly becomes outdated. Stuff no longer works the way it once did: sometimes it improves, and sometimes it becomes inefficient. Or maybe we discover that a system works in one situation (e.g. a pre-pandemic world), but not in another (e.g. virtual schooling, social distancing, etc.). Over time, the weight of maintaining expectations—what others expect of us, what we expect of them, what we expect of ourselves—can grow heavy, because we’re carrying a burden the system wasn’t designed to handle.
The start of a new year (or a new week, or a new day) is a natural space for evaluating what’s working in our life, what’s not working, what we want to accomplish, and whom we want to become. I have found the Wheel of Life helpful as a quick snapshot for evaluating my current level of satisfaction in all areas of life. Some people complete a Wheel of Life at the beginning of each year, while others reserve time to reflect at the beginning of each quarter, each month, each week, or each day. Include the date on your Wheel of Life, and save each one you create; it’s fun to track your growth and progress!
Here’s how to use this tool:
1) To create a Wheel of Life, draw a large circle on a piece of paper. Draw lines to split the circle in half horizontally, then in half vertically; split each of these wedges in half, so you have eight categories total. Each category represents an area of your life. Title the wedges “School” or “Career”, “Family”, “Friends”, “Finances”, “Fun”, “Health”, “Spirituality”, “Growth”, or whichever categories you’re interested in evaluating.
2) Using a scale of 1-10, with “1” being “I’m extremely dissatisfied” and “10” being “I’m ecstatic”, take just a few minutes to rate your level of satisfaction in each wedge.
3) Take a step back, and reflect. What surprises you about your Wheel of Life? Which wedge is the “key” that, if improved, would significantly improve each of the other wedges?
4) What is the first step you would like to take toward your system reset?
What insights did you discover about yourself through your Wheel of Life? Let me know at email@example.com.