Work-Life Balance, What is Realistic?

What is a healthy work-life balance? And is it possible? A work-life balance means being able to find that ideal balance between your work and social life. It is a goal for most people yet very hard to achieve. 

Today’s society strives for success, entrepreneurship, resilience, yet also the ideal family and a healthy social life – so how obtainable is all of this?

There are many versions of what people envision a work-life balance to be, which is your definition of a work life balance?

  1. Standing your ground at work and in your family dynamic. Not allowing either to be too overwhelming or having those lines blur too much.
  2. The ability to compartmentalise each part of your life. You shouldn’t take your work home with you and neither should you take your personal issues to work.
  3. Finding success and fulfillment in your work and also in your family life at all times. Being able to strive to meet your level of ambition and goals in all aspects.

What is the correct way to find work-life balance?

So if we each see the meaning differently, it can seem like a paradoxical way of living.

  • Can you avoid feeling overwhelmed, but also strive to meet your goals? 
  • Could you create boundaries and limits to your workload, but also be successful?
  • Can you not allow worlds to blur, yet set high standards for yourself?

Each of these cannot be done simultaneously. Striving for goals can mean hard work and sacrifice meaning it’s important to allow imbalance and sacrifices when need be.

A healthy work life balance doesn’t necessarily mean an even balance. Your scales are allowed  to tip either way, so long as you have control over it. You need both sides of the scale to support each other, but they don’t have to be even all of the time.

This means forgiving yourself and understanding that other things might fall by the wayside sometimes.

Parenthood is the ideal example of attempting to find balance, but it can be applied to any version of your life.

Once you create your own immediate family, old goals can go out of the window. You start to feel guilt and anxiety at the thought of wanting to do anything else but be with your children.

When you sacrifice all of your old life however, you can start to feel resentment. Self-care is your fuel for everything else, and that includes nurturing your mind, your ambitions and goals. 

What steps can I take to find work-life balance today?

Start communicating what you want to do and when you want to do it. Understand that to meet certain goals, you may have to put other things on pause temporarily.

If you want to meet a deadline to the best of your abilities, then be set in the idea that the dishes and laundry will be forgotten for a while.

If you want to take some time to look after yourself again then your work goals can be set-aside for the time being.

This can all be done with a healthy balance so long as you are communicating your actions to the people around you.

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