If you ask a number of different people to define what work-life balance means it is likely that you will receive different answers. This is because there are a number of misunderstandings about it. Some people think that it is just about using effective time management. Time is an important factor, but it certainly isn’t the only thing that you need to pay attention to.
Work-Life Balance is not a See-Saw at Equilibrium
When some people visualize the work-life balance they have an image of a see-saw in equilibrium. One side of the see-saw is the work-life and the other is the personal life and these are perfectly balanced.
This is impossible to achieve in reality. How do you define this balance? Is it about spending exactly the same amount of time on your work life and your personal life? That is an impossible thing to do and even if you could do it, this does not mean that you have achieved the right work-life balance.
Time Management is not the only Issue
It is just wrong to assume that the ideal work-life balance is all about time. You can spend a lot of time at work or with your personal life and not achieve anything much at all. We are not saying that time is not important here – how you spend your time is what you need to focus on.
Despite this, there are many vendors trying to push their time management courses as a way to achieve the work-life balance. We recommend that you avoid time management courses unless you really want to learn this. There are other factors that you need to focus on to achieve the right work-life balance.
Work-Life Balance is about Contentment
The only true way to measure if you have achieved the right work-life balance is through your contentment levels. If you are content with what is going on in your work life and your personal life then you have a good work-life balance. Anything else means that you have work to do.
A lot of people make the mistake of just focusing on one aspect of their life such as their career advancement. Often this will result in other areas of life being neglected such as personal relationships and self-care.
You need to Create your Work-Life Balance
What is an ideal work-life balance for one person is not going to work for you? You need to accept that you have to create your own work-life balance. This is because you are unique and so are your work and life circumstances.
Never believe anyone that tells you that they have a “one size fits all” solution for achieving the right work-life balance. This is simply impossible. Your solution has to be completely tailored to you and your situation. Using someone else’s solution will never work properly.
People with a Good Work-Life Balance know what they want
A lot of people that have a poor work-life balance have no direction in their lives. They do not have any goals or plans and are drifting along in life. You need to identify what is important to you and pursue this.
Stay Safe and Be Well
The Positive Professional 🙂