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Getting personal. What I’m doing instead of “work-life balance.”

Kai Madrone
November 23, 2022



The myth of separation

I've been thinking about the boxes we put ourselves in. And get put into. We live in a world that compartmentalizes life and tries to make reality tidy.  

We do this to ourselves and each other all day long (she’s a ________, he’s so ________, I’m such a __________, they’re just ________ ). I believe we do this for many reasons: survival, laziness, and because we grew up in a culture that teaches us to value the familiar shapes of mental thought over the untamed, subjective reality of direct experience.

So it’s no surprise that we regularly compartmentalize our own lives--chopping our days and experience into categories, and then trying to manage the divided parts into more wholeness, like work-life balance.  

One way I’ve done this compartmentalization is by dividing professional work from personal life and spending years (decades) persisting in the belief that I need to get my work life sufficiently in place before I can give any real time and energy to the “personal” endeavor of creative writing.       

Check out The New Story here  

This compartmentalization has also showed up here at The Paradigm Shift Project where I confined myself to speaking about marketing tips and strategies that generate increased revenue…because that’s all I’m “supposed” to talk about in this professional space, right?Well, as you probably noticed, I burned out on that approach while back and went quiet here. Like many business owners, I wore out on trying to churn out something valuable every week that fit within those “supposed to” parameters. But the silence has been profound and fruitful, both professional and personally and one of the things I’ve discovered is that FLOW IS FLOW.  

Meaning, when I hold back the flow in one area of my life (let’s say…personal creative writing, for example) the flow constricts in the rest of my life (such as business opportunities and revenue). Everything is energy and the universe doesn't fall for the mental categorization tricks our brains do. My mentor Ro and I have been talking about this all year. She knows that flow is flow and has been gently and consistently nudging me to publish my work. A couple weeks ago on a call with Ro and my marketing magic-maker friend, Karna, I told them it’s time. Time to publish my writing. But I was stuck on logistics. “How do I separate out personal stuff from professional stuff?” I asked.        

“Why would you?” they said.

“Do I build out my personal website as a blog, or try Substack, or do something else?” I asked.

“Substack” said Karna, the genius of online ecosystems.    

So I did exactly that. I created a blog on Substack. Sometimes we just need a little help from our friends. (Or a lot. ☺️)      

Check out The New Story  

So today I'm inviting you to check out my newsletter on Substack, but before you do I want to tell you about how fabulous flow feels right now.  


I feel unleashed. Alive. Buoyant-yet-grounded. Strong. Clear. Energized. Unfuckwithable.  

For the last two weeks I’ve been working on nailing the name, writing my bio and About page, customizing the theme, researching how Substack works, setting all the settings, importing posts from my social media accounts, writing emails, composing new pieces, brainstorming future ones, and getting everything ready for this moment of coming out and extending an invitation to join me on the journey of The New Story and I have felt phenomenal. Better than I have in ages. The flow is flowing and my body is very happy about it.      

Check out The New Story      

Flow is flow  

So I’ve decided there’s no going back. Uncompartmentalized is the way forward. If you’re a business owner you’ve probably noticed that owning your own business is basically a fast track path of personal growth and development. So why not talk about it? Why not compare notes and share what we’re learning along the way?  

That’s my plan here at The Paradigm Shift Project. Instead of confining myself to the industry “shoulds” of sticking solely to valuable marketing tips and teaching brand message and copywriting, I’m expanding to talk about what excites me in business right now: the intersection of personal healing-and-evolution and professional growth. I call it the adventure of up-leveling our businesses from the inside-out.

If that sounds intriguing, please stick around, and in the meantime, I’d like to invite you to check out the “personal” expression of the paradigm shift project—my Substack newsletter called The New Story. It’s the place where I share what’s on my heart, articulate things that are hard to name, celebrate the beauty that exists within and around us, and dare to envision the world that we long to inhabit.      

   "I believe we all belong here. On this planet. To this life. To each other. And I want stories that are big enough to hold us all."       

Visit The New Story  

Thanks for doing the work you do in the world,

P.S. Worth noting—newsletters here have typically taken me 2+ hours to write. This one took 25 minutes. Whohoo! FLOW IS EFFICIENT. 🔥  


Kai Madrone
Posted on
November 23, 2022



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