Tuesday, 31 January 2012
Do you want work/life balance or life balance?
Like many people I'd always used the term 'work/life balance' until I applied a tool I use in coaching to myself and realised the term I was using was half the problem, for me anyway, and that was because of the images using that term painted for me and the impact they then had on my stress levels.
At the start of the session my goal was to understand what I needed to do it ‘have work/life balance’. As I wrote at the time 'like a lot of people I never seem to have enough time and energy to do everything. I feel like I’m a hamster in its wheel. In fact I have two wheels, one wheel for work and one for the rest of my life.' Stress then came from trying to balance both wheels. When on one wheel I worried about the other and vice verse.
Just writing that down seemed to shift something. I realised, for me, balance would only be achieved when I only had one wheel to manage. Thus 'having life balance’ allowed me to, even if only metaphorically, have more control over my life and what I chose to do with it.
I'd be interested in the metaphors you have for life or work/life balance and wonder how those metaphors may help in understanding what needs to change to simply reduce the internal stress of trying to manage it all.
Helping individuals and teams stay on track by finding balance
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I've shared more on life balance on this blog too using Susan Jeffesr model as a base.