Work-life balance was a commonly used in the 1970s in the UK and 1980’s in the US – but is it still relevant?
My view is that it isn’t. We have LIFE – for which there are many elements including what you do to generate an income to support your family and / or lifestyle. But life is far more than that. It used to be true that we worked, probably in the same job, for our whole career between 16-65 and then stopped.
We retired, popped on a pair of slippers and waited for the inevitable; in other words WORK – WEEKENDS – WORK – HOLIDAY – WORK – RETIRE - DEATH. That’s not the case anymore.
Without personal purpose and reason for being many go through their life without cause or focus and when in their late 30’s realise that they feel disillusioned and lost and potentially in the wrong career. This causes distractions and puts pressure on family and personal relationships. There is no switch to be able to turn off work – we can and do receive emails 24 / 7. Gone are the days of walking out of the office or factory at 5pm and being unable to be reached until 9am the next working day.
It’s time to realise everything is changing and with that comes new opportunities and challenges. The focus is now for individuals to write their own story, to build portfolios (a range of interests) and live meaningful and fulfilled lives – with us living for 30,000 days on average why wouldn’t we want to make the most of each day?
Family enterprises are the extreme of this but it’s true for us all.