Meet the family.
“Never get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.” – Dolly Parton
How is Work-Life balance working for you?
It seems to be a common issue whether we have children or not. There are different words used out there like integration – well 6 or half a dozen, the situation remains.
With all those years talking about and all that literature on the topic, the issue is still predominantly present.
Why is that? One of the reasons I can think of is the fact that we don’t always work 9 to 5 like Dolly Parton sang. And because we have so many hours in a day or week, working longer hours often means less time for life.
Let me tell you right off the bat… I don’t believe in Work-Life balance. There I said it.
Work does not equal life in my book.
Work-Life balance??? More Work-Life conflict resolution if you ask me.
People usually start thinking of the concept of Work-Life balance when they find themselves in a situation of stress or feeling overwhelmed by their commitments.
Reacting to someone else’s plan or schedule would create that imbalance.
It’s one thing to recognize that there is a problem and another one to take action to solve it. Finding a solution can imply making choices that can seem difficult and often the level of readiness to make difficult decisions is a key factor.
It’s like going through your closet and sort out the clothes you enjoy wearing (feel good in them) versus the ones you keep despite the fact that you always question why you still have them as they take more space than you would wish.
Everyone’s life is different and our needs vary too. My point is that the relationship between work and life has a specific meaning based on the choices we make, the areas of our lives we choose to give priority.
In my reality, there is no Work-Life balance. There are ten areas in my life requiring my attention on a regular basis.
Let me share what I call my life web presented below in three main categories.
IDG’S LIFE WEB
Category 1 – Common areas
⦁ Family and core group of friends
⦁ Professional life
Category 2 – Areas with internal influences
The ones where I have more a say on the amount of energy I am going to dedicate.
⦁ Self-care (physical and mental health)
⦁ Personal space (moments of real solitude and self-reflection)
⦁ LOL time (got to have fun)
⦁ $ (finances management)
Category 3 – Areas with external influences
As you would guess, the ones where others factors come into play and influence the way I would distribute my energy.
⦁ Personal growth (learning from experiences and other people)
⦁ Contribution (the part I play in my community and the things I do to help something to advance)
⦁ Human connections (interpersonal relationships other than family and close friends)
⦁ Home TLC (any home owner knows there is always something to do)
Here they are the ten areas of my life. I try my best to make time for what I value.
If you wish to do so, here are my top three tips for Work-Life optimization.
1. Develop a reliable and strong support network
2. Define clear boundaries based on what is important to you
3. Try out, just test things out to see what works for you
What about you… Do you have the perfect formula to reach that balance? Please share what works for you.
Au revoir for now.