What are your roles in life?

Steven Aitchison
Written by Steven Aitchison

Your roles in life

How many roles do you have in life? I have at least 8 roles which I have to
juggle and separate, when I say separate I mean mentally separate each role. At
the moment I am a Father, a husband, a support worker, a coach, a counsellor,
a website creator, a blogger, and consultant.

I didn’t really take notice of the different roles until a few weeks

roles_in_lifeI usually get up at around 5.30ish and work on the blog or a website. I
usually wake my kids up at around 7am. So, 7am comes, I walk upstairs
wake them and come back downstairs to cram a few minutes more work. I
then shout at the kids for not being ready, or not brushing their teeth after
me telling them for the 5th time. I then cram another few minutes in. At
around 7.30am I wake my wife up for work or university and then cram another
few minutes into work. Then when I know the kids are ready and had breakfast
and their lunches have been made I then have a cold shower and get ready for
work. I have a cup of tea with my wife and then get the boys ready for
going out to school and off we trot at about 8.15am.

So, from 7am until about 8am I have slipped between roles of blogger, website
creator, father, husband, and getting ready for support worker; 5 roles in
all. What happens is that I get grumpy as hell as sometimes, mentally,
I am not finished one role before I slip into another. So I take it out
on my family, not realising why I am being a bit grumpy.

What is happening is that I am not mentally finishing one job before trying
to go into another job and then not finishing that one before going into another. It’s
like reading 8 pages of a book, you start one page, don’t finish it,
go on to the next page, don’t finish that one and so on and so forth. Nothing
really gets finished. This is mentally frustrating and can cause stress
and anger. I hate starting something and not finishing it, even if I
don’t like the task. I don’t like things being left undone.

Due to the blog and a few website commissions coming in I am much busier than
normal the past few weeks. It was my wife who pointed out I was being
a bit grumpy, which wasn’t like me. We spoke about it and nailed
it down to the mornings and nailed it down to not being able to concentrate
on one role at a time.

A tip for switching between roles

This may seem extremely simple but the trick to switching
between roles successfully is two fold:

  • Recognise what roles you play in life and note down when you play them
  • Set times for changing between the various roles. This has to be
    a conscious thing. For example if you work in the morning set a time
    for finishing that work and don’t go back to it. I now finish
    my blogging and website stuff at 7am and am a father and husband until
    8.30am; then I am a support worker until 4.45pm then I am a father and
    husband until about 7pm and then I am a blogger and website creator until
    about 10pm. Obviously this changes at the weekend and on holidays, as my
    father and husband roles greatly increase in time.

This has helped me tremendously over the last few weeks, I am a lot calmer,
less stressed, and I am getting more things done in life and am procrastinating

What I also found useful was to create a pie chart of what roles I play and
the percentage I play them. The pie chart shows a typical 120 hour waking
week for me. It was interesting to see how much time I spend in different
roles. Doing the pie chart a few weeks ago made me realise I needed to
spend more time with my family so I rearranged a few hours to make more time
for my family. I would like to get rid of the 25% I spend working as
a support worker for the homeless, but money dictates. However I like
my job but spreading the 25% around some of the other roles would be great.

personal development roles in life

What roles do you have in life?

Why not create a pie chart like the one above or simply note down the percentages
of each different role. I think you will be surprised at the number
of hours spent in each role; it may let you look at life in a new way. If
you do work out the percentages why not post them and I will create an overall
pie chart for everyone.

Some Amazing Comments


About the author


  • Hi Janet thank for visiting and thank you for your words of wisdom. I believe stress levels are linked to technology in the workplace, as we have much quicker ways of communicating and everybody wants something yesterday and cannot wait for it tomorrow. We are supposed to be that much more efficient now, due to technology, that we are overburdening ourselves with work and information. so your information certainly rings true with the research that I have followed.

  • By reading these comments it sounds like some people are of the understanding that work, home, personal life balance is eessential. Others may have difficulty recognizing the need for this vital prioritizing. As a Stress Management Consultant for Personal and Corporate Wellness it is essential that we all take responsibility for our physical and mental health. Stress is killing this society and is the #1 cause of illness. 80-90% of the reason we see medical doctors is for stress related illness! Mental Health is costing our Canadians $12 million every year!This acceptance and understanding encourages us to develop and implement ways to do so. There will never be more time in a day so we need to make the time to take care of ourselves. Perception is everything – declutter your life and prioritize!”the mind is like an umbrella – it doesn’t work unless it is open!’ Openess creates the possibiltiy and probablility of change which is essential to change and therefore growth towards our dreams and living the quallity of life we deserve!

  • Thank you for your insight on planning and organizing your life roles. I am still in high school and by organizing my life roles it has helped me become a better person because my stress levels have gone down and I have started to focus on the important things in life.

  • Thanks for all your comments, I appreciate the feedback.

    Tomas – I don’t expect any donations at all, so I am sorry you feel this way when I ask for donations, but do not worry about not being able to contribute financially. You have more than contributed by leaving a comment, I appreciate this very much and hope the articles might help in some way.

    Susie J – I would agree that parenting can cause a bit stress, or lots sometimes, so it’s important to know what you want and know what the kids want from you and try to balance it up.

    I appreciate all you comments and hope to see you back soon.

  • Very thoughtful article. I’ve been working on balancing my time between blog, work, and family. I’m going to make a chart of my work week and see where my time is most spent. Thanks and keep up the good work.
    Karl Staib
    Mind Body Blog

  • Dear Steve,
    I enjoy your site, but I can’t leave you any donation, because I am work-less and my disability pension is so little that allows only to thank for the donations I receive myself… from my family.
    Al above, maybe, was needless reporting, but sad information explains my emotions while reading the article.
    I know, envy is bad feature, but, figuratively talking, I envy you. When we have lots of roles we become weary, but the comprehension of the purpose and watching the results comforts and inspire further walk. As the disabled I had any tasks. My children are grown up and I… so to say, rejoice at my freedom to do nothing. However, that’s not a joy, it looks like a curse.
    While living on disability pension I sense myself and the spiritual giant and the beggar who rival with an awful sense of personal needlessness.
    Bloging is my medicine to deal with time.

  • This makes so much sense. I am kind of a creative type, and once I get an idea, I need to hang on and finish it until it’s done. The ideas just come rushing in, and I have to work fast or I’ll loose them. Parenting makes it very difficult to do that. And I would say that most of my stress is caused by this very issue. I always thought it was something I couldn’t control — but maybe I can. Thanks for this.

  • Great topic. You are so right… we don’t often stop and think of the many roles we each play in one day. Handling those transitions can make all the difference in the world!

    Thanks for the insight!


  • I think managing multiple roles is a potential problem for everyone. It’s amazing to see how you can maintain the balance between so many roles.

    I especially like the pie chart idea to get a big picture of our life and then use it to adjust ourselves as needed.

  • Thanks for providing the insight into your life. It’s really a challenge trying to be successful as a blogger while also balancing a job and personal relationships.

  • That’s exactly it Brian. It’s difficult to change your focus from one task to another sometimes. I love the ‘A-HA’ moments life can bring sometimes, and sharing it is even better.

  • I think you really touched on something in this article. When multi-tasking, it’s not so much the logistics of getting it all done, it’s the mental confusion that it creates. It’s hard to get into that hardcore creative grove that focus can give you.

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