Monday 4 June 2012

Work-Life Happiness vs Work-Life Balance?

I have been reading several articles online, all of which were saying to aim for a 'work-life balance' routine.

On my way to work, I usually come across several billboards displaying the 'work-life balance' premise. If you come to think of it, how plausible is it to have eight hours of work, eight hours with friends and family members, eight hours of sleep is just not possible.

We end up, then, working during the whole week and segregating ourselves from the 'social' and/or 'happy' life, which is left for Friday night and roughly finishes by Sunday evening.

Such a routine already stratifies our social and/or happy life from our work life. 
Our personal and professional lives yet shouldn't be considered as two separate entities, working against each other, but should be seen instead as interdependent, both of which need to be contained within our daily life. 

This is why work-life happiness rather than work-life balance is the key to our holistic fulfillment

Work-life happiness can be achieved by anyone. Your personal life needn't be separated from your professional life.

You do not have different 'lives', or different facets of yourself, as I hear a lot of people saying; who you are at work reflects who you are at home, and very often, what happens at work influences how you act at home, and vice versa.

A mixture of the two then is to be implemented. 

The following are some tips from Muovo on how to achieve work-life happiness:

1. Find a job you love doing.
Although you may say, rightly so, that it's 'easier said than done', you should never give up on happiness. If you're not satisfied with your work, or you have been feeling perhaps as if you're stuck in a rut and there's something 'empty' or not fulfilled inside of you, then don't be afraid to make a change. This is not to say that you should change jobs every time you feel unhappy or wishing to spend a day at the beach than at work, but, if the feeling of dread and lethargy does not fade away, then you should consider changing jobs, or perhaps, even careers. Reflect on what you are doing. Take all the time you need to do so. 

2. Create friendships with your colleagues.
Separating friendships and co-workers is a way of differentiating between your work and personal life. Although it is good to set some boundaries and enjoy the domestic sphere and the work sphere on different grounds, it would be even healthier to go out for a drink at the weekend or during the week with a colleague. It will make the atmosphere at work more friendly, and time will fly by. Of course, there are always limits.

3. Prioritise. Go out during the week!
This is something that I should be doing more often. A lot of us tend to head back straight home after work, eat, wash, and sit comfortably with your cat on your lap to watch your favourite TV show. There is nothing wrong with that, and if anything, it's the most relaxing part of the day - so enjoy it! However, don't be afraid to do something different during the week. Take up a new course or a hobby, attend some aerobic classes, or play football with some friends. It is amazing how the rest of the week seems to pass by quickly, where you will be seeing it with a new pair of eyes. Prioritising what is highly important, and what can be left off for another day is necessary.

4. Be yourself.
Never try to be somebody else in whatever you're doing. Remember that who you truly are is what makes you great. There is always room for improvement, and you can always explore yourself and develop on different levels, but nonetheless, you at 30 is the same you at 15. Don't change identities for anyone. This will make you more productive at work, and happier, everywhere you are.

If you have any other suggestions with regard to achieving work-life happiness, we'll be more than pleased to answer you!

Nikita Pisani at Muovo


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