Work-life balance doesn’t exist. Try this instead…
Many times, we are so caught up with our fixed ideas that we miss the point completely. Work-life balance was one such thing I was struggling with until I figured that it was just a futile attempt trying to achieve it.
Let me explain.
On one side we want and live in a hyper-connected 24X7 world, and on the other, we seek balance by wanting personal time, away from any kind of connections. It was okay in an era when technology was not as developed as it is today, and we could clearly separate the work from personal time. Today, we cannot even if we want to. Technology, like it or not, brings home to work and work to home.
So, what is the alternative? Try work-life blend or work-life integration.
Is this a new term to take employees for a ride? Well, no. Work-life blend is something that all of us have been doing for a long time now. It’s just that we don’t acknowledge it or are even aware of. Work from home, gym at work, games at work – what is all of this? Work-life balance or work-life blend? Well, now? Is it a trick or a reality? Of course a reality.
What do I get from work-life blend?
Firstly, try and achieve something that is real. Work-life balance is not only elusive, its unreal. Given the connected world we live in and our interactions with people across the globe, work-life balance is truly impossible. Unless, you don’t want to grow in your role. Work-life blend is real and you have been doing it. So, you can set goals for work-life blend and actually see progress and be successful.
Less pain and more happiness
Once we know that we are not trying for balance, we may accept the reality and not make unsuccessful attempts at balance and feel the pain. See how the extra pressure goes away within minutes once you work towards amicably blending your work and personal life. You are more prepared to take that very important call during your vacation.
We rigidly split the time between work hours and personal time. But, we don’t take kindly if the work spills into the personal time. But by getting real, you chose to blend the times, spills don’t matter anymore and peace prevails within self.
Blend is our personal choice
Blend, be it cocktail or life is our personal choice. As against balance, the time we want to spend on work and personal things becomes a matter of choice in case of blend. Of course, the focus is on completing the task and not on the hours spent on it.
I have started practicing work-life blend and it started to work really well.. Its not all hunky dory and there are definitely some pitfalls, which we can discuss that on another day. For now, I would love to hear your thoughts.
Still trying to attain work-life balance? or are you moving to work-life blend?