I stumbled upon a great online article the other day in Credit Union Magazine titled “The Myth of Work/Life Balance.” Just in case you misplaced your copy of this must-read publication, here’s a link.
It was like the very corners of my world coming together in one. I’m employed in credit union management and I just so happen to write a personal blog about work/life balance. What are the chances???
Best selling author Jon Gordon compares the rhythms of work and life to the rhythms of nature…there is a time and season for everything.
(Hmmm…where have I heard that before? Oh yes, The Holy Bible Ecclesiastes 3:1 "For everything there is a season, and time to every purpose under heaven.")
Gordon gives advice for rethinking the concept of work/life balance and finding passion and purpose in both arenas. His recommendations:
1) First, let go of the work/life balance notion. Instead, think purpose and passion.
Diana’s Comments: Knowing my life’s purpose keeps me grounded and focused. And if I didn’t love what I do, both at home and the office, I wouldn’t do it. My dad used to tell me “Life is too short to spend it doing something you don’t enjoy.”
2) Look at your work/life blend over the past year as a whole, rather than day to day.
Diana’s Comments: Let’s face it. Some days we’re super mom, and other days we’re pretty sure DCFS is going to come knocking on our door. But if take a look back at the last 365 days, you’ll probably find that you’re doing a pretty darn good job with the kiddos and spouse.
3) Identify the seasons in your company’s work flow.
Diana’s Comments: Prep your family if it’s going to be a busy week at the office. And then plan something fun when it’s over. “Mom’s got a crazy week, but if you can do your part to help me get through it then we’ll go out to a celebration dinner on Friday night.”
4) Keep in mind your family’s seasons too. There are times when your family needs you more than others.
Diana’s Comments: The recent holidays were that time for me. Between the two girls, there were 8 choir performances to attend…plus rehearsals. Throw in school activities…an All-Star presentation, Christmas program and meeting with the speech teacher. Not to mention a birthday…on the same day as Christmas!
5) Build up a hard work bank account with your company.
Diana’s comments: I received tremendous support from my supervisors and colleagues during the weeks my father was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, his 5-week hospital stay, passing and funeral. My co-workers were understanding, supportive and compassionate. I believe a 7+ year track record of hard work and loyalty to my company were indeed paid back to me during that time.
6) When you’re at work, really engage.
Diana’s comments: Work can also be a great escape from personal worries and stress. Leave them at the door when you walk into the office. Give your employer 100%!
7) When you’re at home, really BE at home.
Diana’s comments: I really try to avoid coming home and re-hashing the work day with my spouse. I need a break, and we have better things to talk about.
One last quote by Gordon:
“What I’m really talking about is making the most of your time however you spend it – of making each and every moment count. By doing so, you will create a life that is more passionate, more productive, and happier in every way.”
Great advice. Love it!