‘Work/life balance’ or just ‘life’?

September 27, 2008 at 9:24 pm 3 comments

What is the truth about work life balance?                     

I have just spent an interesting three days at The Marketing Forum, during which time I experienced a conference session entitled ‘The Heck with Work/Life Balance’ run by Jez Cartwright from Performance Consultants. Whilst Jez motivated the audience he still focused on the fact that if you work ‘too much’, it’s bad. How do you define ‘too much’?

A matter of weeks ago, as a manufacturer of diaries, I was asked to put my name to an article written by a life coach on time management. I couldn’t do it. I fundamentally disagreed that work life balance is a 9 to 5 job.

I also disagreed with the perception that work is bad and life is good. Your ‘life’ and how you manage that life to meet your needs is often very different to the next person.  If you love the work you do, and are both challenged and motivated, work is merely part of who you are, part of life.


Entry filed under: Marketing, Marketing Careers. Tags: , .

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3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. David Carter  |  September 29, 2008 at 9:55 am

    For the majority of people, work is merely a necessity, to fund their ‘life’. For the lucky ones who find their work satisfying and rewarding (myself included), there still needs to be a balance that works for the individual, but also for the people around them. Excessive devotion to professional advancement can be addictive I am sure; but it can also come at a price if it is not carefully moderated.

  • 2. The Distraction Diva  |  October 1, 2008 at 2:31 am

    As an expert in this area, I’ve researched the notion of work/life balance for over a decade. Another way of looking at it is that work is a part of your life. The notion of balance or a balance between work and the rest of your life sets up a negative situation of putting one against the other. There is no exact science as to the number of hours a balanced person works. It is as individual as we all are. When someone totally enjoys their work they get many other things out of it and thus these things also contribute to their overall life satisfaction and feeling of being in balance.

  • 3. Jez Cartwright  |  October 19, 2008 at 7:32 pm

    For clarity I would like to state that working hard and for long hours can be a good thing. As I stated the phrase Work/Life Balance is a myth as work, for the majority, is a part of life. With everything that we choose to do there is always a cost / benefit that goes on within us. When we rub up against a situation where our desired choice is being brought into question then this is when we begin to analyse things a little closer. One person may decide to work long hours and they may get a great deal out of this; if they then go on to state that there life is out of balance then they must take full ownership of the fact that they have a choice.

    It is also important to realise that the choice for one person may be ‘too much’ for another. The true decision lies with the maker!


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