When was the last time you took a step back and evaluated how content you’re feeling with life in general? Often, when problems present themselves they do so in certain areas of our life - maybe we’re struggling in our career or our health is worrying us. Whatever the problems are, they can build slowly, knocking us off balance and having a profound impact on our well-being.
Taking a moment to pull back and look at your life as a whole can help you identify which areas need attention to bring you back into balance. This is what the wheel of life tool is used for.
What is the wheel of life tool?
Plotting each area of our life like spokes on a wheel, the wheel of life tool is a visual representation of how happy we are with certain areas of our life. Connecting the dots to form a circle helps us see quickly and easily where we’ve lost balance and which areas need work.
The original concept of the wheel of life was created by the late Paul J Meyer, who founded the Success Motivation Institute® in 1960. Today different variations of the wheel are used by coaches and those in the personal development space.
This is the great thing about the wheel - it’s versatility. You can pick whatever areas of your life are most important to you and even go deeper with separate wheels for different areas. For example, if you’ve noted that your family life needs attention, you could create a dedicated family wheel to help you drill down further.
How to use the wheel of life tool
If you’re ready to take a bird’s eye view of your life, please download our wheel of life worksheet and follow these instructions:
Pick your life areas
We’ve left our worksheet blank so you can choose which areas you want to look at in your life. Need a little inspiration? Here are some categories you may want to include:
These are just some ideas, pick the areas that feel most relevant to you right now. Once you’ve picked these, name each spoke.
Assess your life areas
Now is the time to rate each area of your life on a scale from 0-10. If everything in that area is perfect and you’re happy with it, it’s a 10, if there’s work needed, it’ll score lower. Take time with this step and consider how much attention you’re currently giving each area. Mark your scores on each spoke with a dot or cross.
Connect the dots
Simply connect the dots to form your circle. How does it look? Can you see where your balance may be off?
Consider your ideal score for each area
While many of us may want to achieve a perfect score of 10 in each area, this is unrealistic and will likely only make us feel worse about ourselves as we pursue an impossibility. Instead we would encourage you to think about what an ‘ideal’ score would be for each area.
Consider your circumstances, what time and resources you have available and which areas you really want to focus on. What would it look like for them to be at an ideal score? Remember, you can return to this tool time and time again - it’s OK for priorities to change.
Set out your next steps
Now you know which areas need attention and what your ideal score for those areas would be. It’s time to create an action plan to make this happen. Ask yourself how you can prioritise these areas, what steps can you take to gently lift these scores and feel more balanced?
How coaching complements this work
The wheel of life tool is used by coaches to help clients uncover what they truly need to feel balanced and content. Once they’ve used the tool and identified areas to work on, the coach can offer some much welcomed support, guidance and accountability.
Figuring out what steps you need to take to bring yourself back into balance can be tough. Having someone objective like a coach to talk to can help you uncover what’s achievable for you and what would make the most impact.
A coach can also support you with setting goals that will lead to real change. With regular sessions, coaching keeps you accountable to your actions, giving you the motivation you need to follow through and keep going.
This tool can be used any time you’re feeling off-balance, we recommend checking in regularly to see what tweaks can be made.