Recently, I had an interesting conversation with a few like-minded bloggers. We were brainstorming about a new initiative which we had in mind. At one point we happened to discuss about Work-Life balance (You know when you’re talking with a group of bloggers, you end up talking about everything but the intended topic). People spoke about how work-life balance was critical and even if the scales tilted slightly to any one side inadvertently, things might not be smooth.
At this point, a senior in the group asked all of us to define what work-life balance was. We knew things were bound to get interesting and waited for people to give their own views.
Of the many versions of the definitions that we heard from others, the most striking one was given by the person who asked all of us the question,
‘Life-Work Balance : When you can talk about yourself for 5 minutes without mentioning what you do at work, you can conclude that you maintain a very healthy balance.‘
He realized that some of them present were not very convinced and offered to explain. He said that most of us spend 9 hours on an average at work. Since our lives are centered on our jobs, when we introduce ourselves we normally tend to speak only about the work that we do. But if we can find time to do something that we are passionate about or something that simply interests us, to the extent that we have something concrete to talk about, then we can conclude that we balance things pretty well.
Later that day when I was recounting the events of the evening, I realized how much the words were true. If we can find another world that can co-exist along with our routine (at the same time not compromising on the quality of work that we are paid for!), it gives us something to look forward to. I realized how the senior had mentioned life-work balance and not work-life balance. Essentially isn’t work just a part of our lives? I truly believe that Life always comes before work.
To test my balance, I assumed I was introducing myself to someone and in my mind I tried to give an answer. An answer that wouldn’t speak a word about my work. And guess what, I managed to come up with a fairly decent answer about what I do (which, if I had spoken to someone, would take a few minutes) :-).
So I got my answer. You should probably ask yourself that question too. Or if you have a different definition of ‘Life-Work’ balance, do share it 🙂
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