The Gift of Balance Series: Our Personal Journey Continues

If you didn’t read the first blog in this series, this is a transcript of a Friday morning phone call between three coaches discussing our personal journey for balance in our lives. We each come from different walks of life and different areas of the country. John Gregory is a pastor, coach, musician and writer. He’s a PK and involved in ministry for over 20 years himself, he’s single, loves to run and lives in Florida. Mark Stanifer transitioned to coaching after 20 years in corporate America. He’s a husband, home school dad and lives in Ohio. I’ve counseled for over 20 years, I’m a leadership coach working with ministry leaders. I’m a wife and mother at the end of my home school journey. Check out all our websites below! And we hope you receive something from this blog series!

3) What areas of balance have you had to work on the most?

Mark: For me, the career/life balance. I often use the analogy of a spectrum. At the tail end of my corporate career, I needed to change where I was on the spectrum. Too much work had become a detriment to my time, family, and even emotional health. So now I’ve shifted the pendulum to asking the question, “How much work should I be doing? Am I doing enough work?” My day looks so different. I’ve enjoyed a lot of personal time with family, but I have to balance the time to develop and grow a new business. Work is the area that most easily disrupts the other areas of my life. I’ve gone from placing balances on it to trying to control to asking what are my boundaries and what should I be doing. This one isn’t always a challenge, but it is the one that I need to pay the most attention to because it’s so influential to other components of my life.

Tonya: I think the challenge comes in understanding what our values in life are then choosing to live out of them. Making sure my work hours fit the values I had set for myself was the biggest challenge. Maybe some generational issues there? I graduated from my master’s program 7 months pregnant. We chose to raise our kids ourselves, so balancing my work hours with my husband’s early on was a challenge. I also had to feel okay with not earning as much income as I was capable of and to know where the line of work needed to end so I could give my attention at home. It’s not enough to just be physically present, they needed my attention, eye contact as well. Clearly stating my values and then asking, “Do my work hours reflect my values?” helps me. If I don’t accomplish my tasks in the hours I’ve set, then I have to be okay with stopping. That’s still the biggest thing for me, being okay with not accomplishing everything on the list.

John: I remember hearing Bill Hybels saying how he addressed that issue for himself. When the clocks hits five, he gave himself an automatic stop. But before he left his desk, he’d pause and pray, “God, thank you for what I got done today.” Just a simple prayer that allowed him to leave even with stuff undone.

Tonya: That’s good. One of my seminary professors taught us when we leave for the day to put our hand on the door and pray, “Lord, everything that happened in this office today rests with you and now I go home to my family.” A great way to disconnect from our work and focus on home life.

John: My input on this question is coming from the backside of what’s been said on the work topic. The topic that goes hand in hand on this one is the idea of sabbath/rest/play. It’s not so much that I struggled with finding my identity in work. It was finding the balance between the idea that as a single person I can give more time to the job and the need to find balance between work and play. When I started running it wasn’t just because I enjoy it, which I do, but it was for that purpose to give me structure and personal accountability about the need for this balance. But even then, I had to work on not letting my play feel like work. The competitive drive or need to get better would mess with the balance. Injury is actually a good thing for me. It makes me slow down and pause to evaluate am I pushing too hard. Finding balance in play time helps correct any issues that are on the work side of it.

Part Two: We’ll look at maintaining balance in the Family!

John Gregory – pastor, coach, writer and musician –

Mark Stanifer – life coach, 20 yrs experience in corporate America, husband, father –

Tonya Waechter – leadership coach, 22+ years therapy experience, wife, mother –

Suggested Resources Below:


Essentialism, by Greg McKeown

Living Forward, by Michael Hyatt

Jesus’ message – “Store up treasures in heaven, rather than here on earth.”

Quote by martyred missionary Jim Elliot – “He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep, to gain what he cannot lose.”


The Bible

Emotionally Healthy Leader, by Peter Scazzero

Leading on Empty, by Wayne Cordeiro

Margin by Richard Swenson

Sleep: It does a Family Good & Adrenaline and Stress, both books written by Dr. Archibald Hart


Integrity, by Dr. Henry Cloud

Awe, by Paul David Tripp



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