Part 4: Your BALANCE Sheet

a href=””>Review: INTRO, GETTING READY & Parts 1, 2, & 3

In the previous installments, we inventoried your current assets, liabilities, strengths and weaknesses. We also looked at your potential opportunities and threats to your future. Before deciding where to apply those assets and the focus of your creative effort, we need to total the current balances in each account of your life.

This is a crucially important step for two reasons:

Imbalance = Disaster

We often see people who have become successful in one area of life, but are utter disasters in many other areas. Tabloid magazines are full of this kind of drama, with headlines of bitter divorces, drunk-driving arrests, family feuds, racist rants, bulimia, drug rehab, depression and suicide attempts. Many of these same people, the ones many Americans idolize, are some of the most unhappy, insecure and depressed people you will find. Why? Their focus on succeeding in one area of life created a great imbalance with the other areas.

Remember the final words given to me by dad’s wealthy friend the day before he died? Read them (and live by them) HERE.

Be wary of the price the rest of your life has to pay for the success in one area of your life.

Wrong Account
Someone recently shared with me an incredibly poignant distinction, he said before you build your business plan, build your life plan. Figure out what kind of life you want to have first—where you want to live, what type of people you want to be surrounded by, whether you want to work nights and weekends, whether you want to travel (and how much and where), whether you want to be home for dinner every night, if you want a short commute, what type of environment you want to go to each day, how you want to dress, etc.

He said to then build yourbusiness or professional plan around these criteria.

Whoa! I have been doing it all backward! You?

Most of us have done exactly the opposite—we build our business plan first. We outline all our big goals, plans and ambitions, and then figure out how to fit our lives around them (usually sacrificing much of the rest of our lives). Or sometimes we define a professional plan by outlining the money we want to make and titles we want to obtain—again, sacrificing much of the rest of our lives. If we continue to live this way, when we get to the end of our lives, we’re likely to discover we paid too high a price and sacrificed what was really important in life, for too little.

Life without balance can cost you your relationships. Life without balance can cost you your health. Life without balance can cost you your spirituality. Life without balance can cost you your wealth and your happiness. So find things to motivate you from all areas of life. Your success depends on it.” —Jim Rohn

Don’t let that happen to you… and now is the time to find the right balance for you and your life’s desires.

Download and complete the LIFE ASSESSMENT Worksheet and WHEEL OF LIFE Chart. This is worksheet set 4. It will have to be printed first to complete. You will not be able to fill in the form fields on your computer. (NOTE: The link will be sent via the e-mail feed. If you are just registering now, the link will be in the next feed along with links to all prior worksheets. E-mail feeds typically distribute later in the evening following posts published earlier in the day.)

Have you learned some new things about yourself? Have you discovered some gifts, attributes, opportunities and hidden potential you didn’t fully credit before? Share your experiences with this ongoing process in the comments below. You are also welcome to ask any questions you might have.

Next week we tackle THE GRAND DESIGN… the identification and declaration of your Big, (potentially) Hairy and (certainly) Audacious Goals. Get ready!!



72 responses to “Part 4: Your BALANCE Sheet”

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  2. Keep working through the program, Santo. If three is too much for you, start with one or two goals forst to keep the balance in your life. Just remember to keep moving forward and do the best that you can.

  3. hi ,Darren
    i have a problem
    if i put my important three 10 years goals.&my top three 2010 goals. there is no balance in my life.
    because i will choose three goals from different areas or from one area . in this case there is areas i didn’t focus on them. so there is no balance. plz give me your advice & how i can solve this problem. thank you for your valuable time :)

  4. Don’t read too much into it, Jupiter. This is all true for individuals as well as businesses! In either situation, any lack of threat assessment leaves you off guard so keep your focus on determining these threats and create plans to avoid them.

  5. As a graduate of marketing, I learned that strengths and weaknesses are internal and opportunities and threats are external but it seems to me that the threats in Part 3 are questioned as internal. Am I reading it right? Is the personal business plan different in perspective?

  6. Thank you for providing these series and the worksheets for free.

    [DARREN HARDY] You are very welcome, Xuan!!!

  7. If the people we look up to are having a hard time in their lives, are we going to be affected by them as well? If this is the case, who are we going to look up to in order for us to have a better future? Can I make you as that person whom I look up to, Darren?

    I’ve entered my email and already clicked the activation link. I’m waiting for the BALANCE sheet to arrive. Thanks in advance.

  8. Hi Darren,

    I just finished worksheet 4, drew my wheel and it seems pretty balanced except my spirituality. What do you define as being a spiritual person?


    [DARREN HARDY] Spirituality is a completely personal thing. It does not have to be religious. For me it is mostly living in alignment with my deepest authentic self. Operating from my heart. Being open, accepting, forgiving and loving. It is being centered and connected to my inner self. Some would call that inner self their relationship with God, with Jesus, with the Buddha… the label doesn’t matter as much as that sense of connection to your higher power, potential and authentic source is.
    But then, don’t take my definition, it is up to you to define what spirituality is for you. I only recommend that you don’t have to define it as society or culture mores do – find that aspect of yourself that is truly authentic, whole and connected. That is the objective in my opinion.

  9. Man, I find myself wanting to write things down the way I want them to be instead of the way they really are. The truth hurts.

  10. Wow and wow backwards! I really wish I could upload a visual of my “wheel.” It looks more like some strange shape that a two year old doodled! But I’m pressing forward… Darren, thank you for helping me be better!

    [DARREN HARDY] Thanks for the great visual I now have floating around in my head, Stephanie! I’m sure you are not alone with your “doodle” for a wheel. Keep pressing forward and you just might turn it into something with a bit more shape and structure. Thanks for so much sharing!

  11. This was a real flat tire of an evaluation, man I new things were out of balance didn’t realize how bad. WOW it will be exciting with these tools and mentoring watching the “WHEEL Become BALANCED”.

    [DARREN HARDY] Exactly, Ray! Sometimes you need to set your life laid out for you, in black and white, on paper, to really appreciate the work you need to do.

  12. Wow! Each exercise has gotten more difficult for me. I’ve gotten behind in completing the worksheets as they come because I really am doing some soul searching making sure my answers are true and not just another exercise to get through.

    After completing the SWOT analysis, I finally got an answer to a question I’ve been struggling with for the last year and guess what?! It was really a very simple solution, I just had not taken the time to really sit down and think it through until I begin this life design program this year.

    Thank you so much Darren for sharing this invaluable program with us! This was exactly what I needed right at the time I decided to go for my BIG goals but didn’t know how. This process while sometimes uncomfortable is truly a blessing for me.

    [DARREN HARDY] So glad you were able to find a solution in your life, Keisha! Thanks so much for sharing this victory with us. :)

  13. This excercise really made me dig deep and articulate what I stand for and my non-negotables. Thanks so much for pushing us all to be…extraordinary!

    [DARREN HARDY] My pleasure, Asia! But you are already extraordinary – I’m just trying to help you recognize and ACHIEVE it!

  14. Yeah guys and gals, let’s pull out the right brain kung fu on the ole left brain. Let’s kick the can’t out the door and bolt it shut!

  15. My wheel is more like a triangle – definitely not going to roll smoothly…Awareness is at least 1/2 the solution; I acn choose to ignore it or do something about it. If I choose to do nothing – I have no right to complain later when the wheel completely falls off! So, I am going to tackle it NOW!

  16. I am having a really great time with this program and am VERY grateful for you putting it out there for FREE!! Super awesome… THANK YOU DARREN!! When I finished my wheel, I noticed that I am fairly even all around, meaning my life could be considered balanced. The problem is, it looks like a low quality balance :(
    This was such an eye opener because I can see that I have been crusing through life knowing that I want something more, but being so comfortable, not doing anything about it. This has really been an eye opener for me and for that I am beyond grateful! I can’t wait to get into the planning, actions, and accomplishments to come!

  17. The balance sheet is a great visual illustration where we are at in each area of our lives. It really helps me “paint” a clear picture

  18. Darrin, thanks for this opportuntiy of a lifetime – challenge for us to do something most people never think about seriously doing. Being honest, totally honest with ourself and then taking inventory/assessing your own situation, really be honest about what we see and making the necessary adjustments is a real, in some areas difficult task. Thanks for giving back! I shared with friends, family and loved ones and hopefully they will take the challenge seriously. And thanks for having a Maggie Scott on board to help us not so savvy computer participants. I will always keep you, Maggie and your families and your endeavors to help others be the best they can be in my prayers!

  19. Thanks Darren! I have a great life(Thank God) but over the past year I’ve been trying to focus in on potential problem ares. I have a problem being a risk taker because I have to look at things from every possible angle before I move. ( I can make a ckeckers game last forever). This course has helped me realize a few things; to put things more in perspective. I think about my Grandpa in light of this study. Though he died without great material wealth, he left nine children. Due to what he instilled in them all nine familys have lived in harmony with each other for years. I’m realizing that one person can teach in “this” area, and another person can establish you in “that”.

  20. This is a great course. I really enjoy the articles and the worksheets that really provoke internal thought and evaluation. I am young still and am fortunate that I have been exposed to this magazine and especially this workshop. This will help me reach and exceed my potential. Thank you so much Darren!

  21. I love the way that this strips everything away and gets to the core of who you are. What a brilliant idea with having us ask people about our strengths and weaknesses. Not a very common conversation I would call up and have with my best friends and business partners…”hey, let’s talk about what my worst quality is.” It was amazing how so many people felt the same way. It is something I may not have ever worked on without this assessment and I am so looking forward to the rest of this course. This shows what an amazing person you and with an awesome heart to want to do this for so many out there. We love you and we love SUCCESS!!

  22. Darren,

    Thank you for clarifying on your Video on Friday that there are some of us who do not own a business or even work…but these questions are meant to be thought provoking and get us to think in a new way…I knew that deep down but I am so hard on myself as it is..that I guess I needed to hear that…to just get a new thought process going…. Thanks!! ~ Kim

  23. This weeks lesson about balance has been invaluable. In the past, I have always focused on 1 part of my life and found success there to only turn around and realized that the other parts of my life were falling apart. As I went through the worksheet, the questions forced me to be much more introspective and brought to light issues that I have been completely ignoring. I have always been good about making plans and setting goals, just not always good about completing them. They say, you can’t make a plan for where you are going if you don’t know where you are. I now know where I am and I’m looking forward to planning a future that leads to a balanced and successful life. Thanks Darren.

  24. This is an amazing series … everything I’ve “discovered” are things I knew but didn’t fully admit to myself. Putting it down on paper brought a resounding “smack” across the face and put many things in perspective. Right now I’m staring at 2 – 5 years of change to get where I want to get, as the gaps I’ve identified are quite large; for example, my parenting skills are far weaker than I want them to be, but changing the work-family-self balance to improve those is going to take time.

    But thank goodness I’ve identified the gap NOW while my kids are still very young so I can be more present for them … starting TODAY.

    Thanks Darren.

  25. I found the scoring on the lifestyle part gave a low number that doesn’t feel accurate. For example, I don’t go to cultural events 2 times a month, but I don’t want to as that would be way too much for me. A few times a year is just right. I’m not constantly seeking adventure as that isn’t what I want from my life – sometimes, yes, but not constantly. I enjoy much of what I do on a daily basis. I don’t take 20 minutes to daydream as this activity does not yield enough benefit to warrant 20 minutes worth of time. I got a low score on this section compared to the others, but I enjoy my lifestyle a lot. Most days are a good mix of activity. It seems that the scoring is geared toward someone with different preferences than I have.

    [DARREN HARDY] Michele, the questions are a guide, ultimately it is your own view and judgment of your life and your desires for improvement in certain areas of your life that matter. Score yourself on how you see yourself now and by comparison on how you would like to see it in the future. If those questions didn’t prompt the right criteria, you are free to make your own judgments – no problem!

  26. As I have done the worksheets for the last installment I find it a bit addicting to ask people how I show up in life. I want to know how so many other people see me. It is just a bit addicting. Thank you Darren for making this available to me. It has truly been an amazing adventure to go through each exercise and discover things about me that I didn’t know. I enjoy learning about myself and what I truly want in life. Beyond that I am paying attention to ways I can improve myself and I want to implement them, not just talk about them. It has been incredible for me and I cannot wait to see what the next 6 weeks brings out in me.

  27. Darren, I have just completed the second week of the 8 week program. It has been a real wake-up call. After writing my obituary and epitaph, I turned to my husband and said, “I don’t even know who I am.” I have spent so much time defining my existence through my roles of wife, mom, teacher, that I don’t know me anymore.
    I love my family, I love being a teacher, but I need to love ME. I am 43, and sometimes feel like I am running out of time to reach my goals. I recently started a home-based business and I want to LIVE everyday so that the business can be my vehicle for reaching those goals.
    You and the other bloggers have helped me to realize that it is not too late and that by actually living everyday (by planning!) the achievement of goals is inevitable
    I look forward to the next 6 weeks! Thank you to everyone for your input and support.


  28. Hi Darren,

    Thank you for all the helpful sheets and advices. At the end of the last year I set one very important goal for the new year: to find the balance betwwen my four bodies – mantal, emotional, spiritual and physical. And I am really happy that this has happend so soon :-). Incredible!!!
    I am sure that this process will be the most important thing for me until now. I had two wonderful new ideas this week and I feel that my life takes a wonderful new direction, a new way that I go with my heart, with happiness, love and fulfillment.

    And Darren you can’t imagen how much I love your magazine!

    Best wishes,
    Ivelina, a big fan of you :-)

  29. I did the balance sheet at lunch yesterday. Any items that got a 3 or lower score was highlighted– it immediately showed specifics that need attention. What a great way to focus on immediate changes I can make to improve my life RIGHT NOW!! This is an exercise I will revisit on a regular basis.

  30. […] Wrong Account Someone recently shared with me an incredibly poignant distinction, he said before you build your business plan, build your life plan. Figure out what kind of life you want to have first—where you want to live, what type of people you want to be surrounded by, whether you want to work nights and weekends, whether you want to travel (and how much and where), whether you want to be home for dinner every night, if you want a short commute, what type of environment you want to go to each day, how you want to dress, etc. He said to then build your…. CLICK HERE TO CONTINUE READING […]

  31. Hi, Darren and everyone!
    I am really enjoying this series and the blogs. I, too, am in my early 50’s; a physician; and also someone with ADD who was diagnosed later in life. You’re right–we all tend to make our choices in a backwards way–where we try to fit our lives around what we hope to achieve or the money we hope to make. That’s even harder for those of us with ADD or ADHD. Our minds are always distracted, impulsive, or disorganized–even if we take medication to help! I was almost devastated in 2008 when I had to close my private practice for teens & young adults due to poor insurance reimbursements that adversely affected our cash flow. I became very depressed and considered dropping out of the practice of medicine altogether. However, by God’s grace I found some other part-time positions to practice medicine that allow me to be more creative while still exploring “fun” areas of my life that will bring me more satisfaction. I had worked so hard to keep my former practice afloat and to pay employees in the face of declining and irregular insurance reimbursements that I neglected my true needs and relationships for several years. I firmly believe that God allowed my practice to close because I would probably have had a heart attack otherwise. God bless you and Success Magazine for all your work and eye-opening revelations! I will be able to help many of my patients with these same principles and hopefully encourage them to avoid some of the pain and heartache I’ve had through life up until now.

  32. For those of you not getting the worksheets try this: While in you email go to View, make sure HTML is clicked on. I was having this same problem when trying to access it from work.

    [DARREN HARDY] Great tip, Melissa. Thanks for sharing!

  33. I am very excited to see that my life has a certain amount of balance in everything except financial, which I expected. But everything else is very close. I love knowing this information so that I can focus in those areas, but know what level to keep in the existing area. This is an amazing program for me to go through. I needed this kind of focus.

    Brian, Orange County, CA

  34. Very interesting lesson. I found that I am better off in many areas than what I believed. Sadly, that left two ares very low. What a fantastic wake up call, and opportunity to change! Thanks for providing this course.

  35. The last exercise was fun… The telephone suddenly felt like a 1000 pound gorilla. It brought up some resistance that has been stopping me and I gained some valuable insights. For instance, one of the assets that kept coming up is my authenticity and ability to connect with people. Coincidentally, the worst quality and the sabotage is my the lack of connecting with people. Hmmm…

    To Freedom,


  36. To Fred St. John – as a salesperson I can relate. This just comes with the territory. Getting yourself to make sales calls is part of the job. It’s tempting to most salespeople to blow off the calls. I think what sinks most salespeople is not fear of rejection, but boredom. It’s very repetitive to make lots of calls that, statistically speaking, won’t go anywhere. Most calls generally will not result in sales, and you don’t know which calls will give you the sales until you actually call them. Being very regimented and deciding how many calls you need to make in a day, then checking them off, will help. Plan a reward for making the number of calls that is your goal (you get the reward just for making the calls regardless of how many sales result).

    What many people don’t realize is that sales is a profession, and you should get basic sales training (and then continue with training throughout your career) just like you did when you became an electrician. Dale Carnegie has a great course (I did took some of their courses, the sales course is great).

    Hang in there

  37. I have a real quick question for you .I am a retired Electrican .I am 59 years old ,I joined a network marketing company to start another phase of my life ,I know what I have to make the kind of money that I wont to make ,I bought all the leads that I need to call my problem is I just can not get myself to make the calls .Can you help me with this problem .
    Thanking you in advance
    Fred st. John

    [DARREN HARDY] Fred, without getting into a networking training I would suggest that buying leads is not going to be your best avenue to begin with, but find someone in your support team to make some of the calls with you to help you get started. If there isn’t anyone, then all I can suggest is the Nike philosophy – Just Do It. No calls no money. Wish there was another way, but if you don’t plant, you don’t reap a harvest.

  38. Being notified of posts is another motivating factor to stick with this. I receive emails on my phone as comments are posted, I schedule time to read them twice a day, that way I stay motivated and know that generally we are all facing similar challenges, no matter of where each one of is coming from.
    Thank you All!

  39. Hey Darren I live in Australia and found about you through the ACN 2009 Anaheim convention. I was truly inspired at that event from your words of wisdom. I’m trying to implement these key lessons to my ACN Business is that good or bad?? But I have been more open to finding opportunities because I’m 19yrs old so being young I can take more risks. What are your thoughts about that?

    [DARREN HARDY] Benjamin, congratulations on your ambition, diligence to take this process seriously and for finding a great company like ACN to associate with! Direct sales is what I did at 18 years old to start making a six-figure income so you have found an excellent vehicle to help you realize your goals. And yes, when you are young with fewer responsibilities (spouse, children, etc.) you can swing for the fences and have a little more reckless abandon than those who have a family to consider. If if you go bust, the only person affected is you and you can chalk it up to the price of entrepreneurial tuition. Go for it Benjamin!! Video on the Art of Taking Risks:

  40. anxious to dig into the worksheets from tues. and today. Enjoying the reading online although not enough time in the day for everything. Thanks again for the opportunity to gain some nuggets of wisdom. I just signed up with ACN but am working at our family business. I have 8 kids and a stepdaughter, was an RN at one time-actually twice, took 3 years of social work, travelled and preached the gospel with my late husband – it’s been a life!! Enough- got work to do!

  41. I am without words. I’ve signed up earlier this week and you got me thinking. I know I’m a good wife, mother, employee etc…. but I somehow lost me in the process of raising my kids and going through the motion of life (you know…make lunches, parent/homework/dinners/laundry/teacher meetings/running to the rinks for hockey). This exercise has me reconnecting with myself and making me stop to ask fundamental questions of my being. Last year I made myself a bucket list of things I wanted to get accomplished (out of 20 maybe 3 got done). Life got in the way…but now that I look back I question what life (the day to day rat race) There is more to me than I know and I need to chanel my PASSIONS..because isn’t that what success is all about -being passionate about what you do! Thanks for the opportunity-glad I stumbled onto this site!!! MERCI

  42. I am overwhelmed by this journey of self discovery. At almost 52 years old (O.K. I look about 40 so cut me some slack) I’ve known for a long time that I haven’t lived up to my full potential. Thank you Darren for your mentorship. I need this so much. If I didn’t have so many responsibilities here I’d pull up stakes and come find a way to work with you. That would be a growth experience!

  43. Doing these worksheets and reading the blogs has given me an insight into my life and the things that are important to me. I especially connected to the part about designing your life plan before your business plan, that is something I have failed thus far to acknowledge in my life. And as my wheel shows I am a bit off track in two areas of my life.

    Thanks for pushing me to dive into who I really am.

  44. Darren, Thanks so much for offering this life-changing information to us for free. Unfortunately, there will be many who will not take advantage of it. It will definitely be their loss! I decided to begin my daily journal this year with the entry “Today I am thankful for:” and list all the things I am/was thankful for that day. Sometimes I say that I am thankful for frustrating days because it helps me appreciate the days when things go smoothly. I am excited for this journey…I have discovered things about myself that I don’t particularly like and this is as good a time as any to change those things. I love SUCCESS magazine and the inspiring articles. I am 46 and wish I would have had this information sooner, but maybe I wouldn’t have been ready for it like I am now. Thanks!

  45. A gratitude journal is a great thing to do and have I am so greatful for Success Mag and for Darren and for all the great motivational Guests I am so thankful for all of you and especially my faith in Heavenly father whom makes all this for us to embrace. Have a great week and be ever so greatful for all that we have .I am

  46. Dearest Darren, I just love the wonderful program you are giving us readers of Success Mag. I am blown away at how great these are , I am in my early 50s and just wished i had been able to get this valuable information. Take one thing from my email,Dont ever stop reading Success Mag and listening to there CDs inside the mag and the other valuable information. Also Darren Hardy is brillant and is giving this Fantastic information take it share it and just do it by the time you get a little older you will be so successful you will be able to help others and help make this world a better place like Dave Ramsey says in his steps the last one is to make tons of money and then give it away God bless you all I cant wait to answer all the questions to make my life Balanced thats the big key . Love Cheyenne

  47. Hi
    Still not receiving any worksheets via email I’m afraid. Any ideas why ? How can i get them ? Thanks a lot

    [MAGGIE SCOTT] Sent them your way, Andy. Please let me know if you still have problems at

  48. I keep receiving the emails about this blog and have been able to view these pages but I never see or receive the worksheets… how do I receive them?

    [DARREN HARDY] Chenelle, please make sure you are signed up at and not the SUCCESS blog site. The worksheet downloads will appear as a hyperlink at the end of those emails. If you keep having this problem, email and she’ll help you out. :)

  49. HEY! So im new to this blog, I just signed up today, and have just spent the last 2 hours going through all the installments and links. This is really helpful!!! Im 19 yrs old and have recently decided to move away from home and go pursue my life long dreams…(for the second time..haha)…The problem the first time was that I gave none of these things thought, except for the end result, and had absolutley NO direction! This blog is coming to me at EXACTLY the right time in my life! And whats even more amazing is that i have never heard of or started reading success magazine until your january 2010 issue had come out! Now I’m hooked, can’t get enough, and am extremely greatful that there is a publication out here like this one…. thanks Darren and SUCCESS magazine!

    [DARREN HARDY] What a great time to discover this information Catherine. I did when I was 18years old and was earning a six-figure income by the end of the year. It is the number one factor I attribute the success I have had. Welcome to your incredible future!

  50. “Don’t miss the point like I did. I wish I’d spent as much time and energy accumulating relationships as I had houses. I wish I had invested my heart as aggressively as I did my money. Only now do I understand true wealth, and none of it appears on a balance sheet.” Wow…There are so many people who realize this so late in their lives…It just blows my mind..

    We are taught at an early age and by the “SOCIETY NORM BOX” that it is every person for themselves and that you need to study hard get good grades go to college and get a good job so you can have a house drive a nice car and have 2.5 kids and a wife/husband that you don’t have time to spend with cause you are so busy making a living that you are not making a life… I am so happy as I look back over my life I have no regrets…I would not be the person that I am today had I not made the choices I made I. Sure I have made some bad choices but I learned a lesson from each one of them and had I not made those particular choices, I would have not had the experiences I have had or let alone have met the people I have met…in the past I have had that thought why did this not happen sooner or why had I not met that person earlier in my life…Why…because I was not ready I was not prepared to be able to learn from them. People come into your life when YOU are ready for them….It is amazing that at 40 years old I am able to see somewhat the big picture and know that there are so many people that I can learn from and I treasure my family so much more and my TRUE friends…they are the family that we pick for ourselves!!! Thank- You Darren I am looking forward to filling in this section also!!! ~ Kim :)