The one with some work life balance

I always struggled with the whole work life balance thing. The idea that organisations needed policy and process to protect their employees from working. This seemed out of kilter with the ideas of maximising effectiveness and extracting discretionary effort…

What I’ve grown to realise is that for some people (i.e. Me) balancing work and life is a bit of an exercise in futility in that they rarely switch off and require some serious space in order to do so. For others, they have either the circuitry or the confidence to just flick the switch and they can take not just the physical break but also the mental break required to come back feeling rested and actually deliver at 110% rather than just attend at that rate.

With this in mind I have said yes to being involved in several trips that started 10 days ago and aren’t done yet. The venues are quite diverse although the participants are largely consistent and so respective Sundays have seen me with very different perspectives on life not just figuratively but literally. It leads to a diversity on one’s ‘view of life’ which seems to be largely good for the soul if not bad for the bank account.

Last Sunday I was sat on the gorgeous Knoydart peninsula off Mallaig in Scotland

and this Sunday I started the day in Gatwick airport but fortunately ended it in somewhere warm, sunny with long drinks intended to contain umbrellas.

Are work losing anything by me being here? No, it’s part of my annual leave. Are work gaining anything for me being here? Yes, because I will get some space and time to really think broadly without worrying about the day-to-day.

It’s now 3.30am UK and in 3 hours I should be getting up to start my week but that’s not going to happen here. Instead I will spend the time reading, chatting, eating and may even stretch to some boozing but somewhat annoyingly I do have some ideas bouncing around my head for a slide pack I need to write and that may appear in some form tomorrow….

And to anyone who asks the question….yes my work mobile is at home on the dining room table. Am I feeling stressed about that? Not yet!

On that note I will close because I am due to wake up with a start wondering where I am in the next few hours but will leave you with this thought….it’s 28 degrees here, happy Monday!

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “The one with some work life balance

  1. Mine’s a Pina Collada! We spend far too much time obsessing in organisations about what people are doing and the time they spend doing it. Outcomes are what matters.

    Work life balance is not a concept I can subscribe to anymore – we are past that. It’s all about work/life integration. And for that to happen properly we need to pass the responsibility for managing that integration to the employee, the worker, and not hold on to it as an organisation, or a boss, or an HR professional.

    So in the future, I shall be expecting a blog post from you, in some sunny place as you are now, but where you are actually working and playing at the same time. Your location is irrelevant, its your output that counts!

  2. I have always liked the assumption that when you’re working you’re not living. That’s Scientific Management for you….

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