Career advice guru, Barbara Moses, recently wrote about work-life balance. I have struggled with this myth since becoming a mother but she is now advising me to forget about it and get on with life. She got my attention and her advice resonated well.
Since motherhood I have occasionally second guessed the choices I have made between my career and my family life. No matter which side of the fence I was on, I was always curious about what the women were doing on the other side! I know I am one of the fortunate ones as we had the financial means to allow me to make choices, though that didn’t necessarily make the choices any easier.
Basically the article begs people to stop whining about work-life balance and get on with what’s important in their life. That is my own life. It’s true. No institution can adjudicate and promote my own work-life balance. Furthermore, it’s not a one size fits all state of being. I think all too often people are looking to our governments and our employers to make these decisions for us in their policy making, but it really does come down to doing what is best suited for me and my goals in life.
Here are her suggestions:
- Forget about the pursuit of balance – things that engage me make me feel good about me and my life
- Identify what’s important – if I imagine myself 10 years down the road, which decisions will I be proud of and which will I regret?
- Know where your presence is most valued – it is a fact of the corporate life that if I put my family first I just may not get that promotion. Will I really regret it?
- Be engaged, wherever you are – I set boundaries for work and focus on personal things at home
- Stop playing the guilt game – if I really feel guilty, I should change my behaviour
- Think life chapters – I can never have it all, ALL the time
- Forget easy solutions – or “Mother said there’d be days like this …”
- Be steadfast – I won’t second guess myself or allow others to make me feel guilty
- Accept less than perfect – as a parent, partner, boss, employee, and friend.
Sounds an awful lot like a list of New Year’s resolutions! Thinking back to what I wrote I was most thankful for in 2010, family, health and prosperity http://dustbunnychronicles.wordpress.com/2011/01/01/baracka/, I guess I already did apply Barbara Moses suggestions above. That’s what made it such an awesome year!
Life with kids is crazy. Life without kids is crazy. What are you going to do about it? I don’t think I need to chase that work-life balance mirage any longer.