Work-life balance can be difficult to achieve, especially if you’re a creative. Your passion and career become indistinguishable, and there just aren’t enough hours in the day to set aside for your personal life. However, balance is possible, and we talked to entrepreneurs like Nico Bolzico, Hideo Muraoka, and Cath Sobrevega about how they manage to achieve it.
Set priorities and limits.
To say that Nico Bolzico is all over the place is an understatement. When he’s not doing commercial shoots, the businessman is managing the LM10 group of companies, a livestock, agriculture, and research conglomerate. His work takes him from North Luzon to Cebu to General Santos, and dozens of other places in between.
According to him, maintaining a work-life balance on top of all that, is a matter of prioritization. “I think it's not healthy to focus 90 percent of your time and energy into work,” Nico says. “You always have to say, okay, this and this are what is happening now, but I need to stop and spend time with my family.”
In a home with his wife, four pets, and a baby on the way, family is a huge part of his life. Making time for them isn’t always easy, but he manages to do it by finding ways to work efficiently.
“There’s this feeling like, ‘Oh, you need to work 24/7,’” he says. “But that’s not the case if you're organized and you work efficiently. Especially now with technology, it's not like we're ever completely disconnected. That's key today—it gives you much more flexibility on where you can be.”
Trust your business partners.
For stylist and jewelry designer Cath Sobrevega, every day presents a different challenge.
“One day, I'm meeting with clients or agencies. The next day, I'm pulling out clothes or sourcing materials. Other days, you'll see me at shoots. And then some days, I work on Nami,” she says. To do it all, Cath juggles everything on her phone. Aside from chatting with clients, she uses her phone to put pegs together, make presentations, edit photos, and check orders for her jewelry brand.
In fact, she spends so much time on her phone that a lot of what she does during her downtime is still done on the device. When she’s not busy, you can probably spot her watching the videos and tutorials she’s downloaded onto it.
But for Cath, work-life balance means being able to step away from it all once in a while. “I make sure I get to breathe, to work out,” Cath shares. “It's very important to me. And I travel.” How does she manage to find the time? It’s all about trusting the people who have her back. Cath works with three assistants in her styling career, and with her best friend and an assistant in Nami.
“It's okay to delegate,” she says. “I mean, you’d want to do everything yourself, but I think it's okay to ask for help. Find a team that you can trust and that your clients can trust, so that even if you're not around, it's business as usual.”
Set aside time for self-care.
While he’s most known for his modeling career, Hideo Muraoka is a total everyman. He works as a yoga instructor, personal trainer, and professional photographer—working on the marketing material for his wife Fatima Rabago’s swimwear brand. He’s also a hands-on, nanny-free dad who drops his daughter off at school and picks her up every day. It’s a tiring lifestyle, but Hideo finds the energy to do it all with habits that keep him in shape, both physically and mentally.
“One thing that's helped me to maintain work-life balance is focusing on my health,” he says. “When I'm healthy, when I'm in top shape, everything works well. I make sure I eat well, I sleep well, I do my movement practice every day.”
For fun, Hideo hits the gym, plays football, practices yoga, and trains in mixed martial arts, among other things. His smartwatch, he says, helps him keep on track with his fitness goals via apps that measure the calories he burns, as well as his heart rate. But what he finds to be just as crucial is getting enough sleep.“We need to rest. We need to let the body recover and to balance our hormones,” Hideo explains. “I believe we have so many emotional problems related to stress and society because we don't sleep well.”
His advice for people who are hesitant to incorporate self-care into their already-busy schedules? Stick with it, because the rewards always come at the end. “Everybody who exercises feels good. It's not easy to go through with it, but it always leaves you feeling good when you’re finished.”
For Nico, Hideo, and Cath, work-life balance isn’t as elusive as it seems. It’s possible to achieve that balance through a combination of priorities, self-care, and coordination. It also helps to have tools and gadgets that allow them to maximize their time, wherever they go. Check out the video below to see what an average day in their lives is like:
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