Dynamics of Work-Life Balance


For quite long, I was thinking to write something about work-life balance. Over a period of time, working in corporate, meeting different people and reading lot of stuff, I have developed my understanding about work life balance.

 

Work-Life Balance does not mean an equal balance but it is all about right balance. Right balance may also differ from individual to individual.

 

The notion of cultivating awareness of one’s work versus one’s pleasure emerged when the word “leisure” caught on in Europe in the Industrial Era. Work became separate from “life”.

 

I do not know, taking certain references will qualify for “Plagiarism” or not but honestly, I have referred the wiki and various topics on work life balance. Work–life balance is a concept including proper prioritizing between "work" (career and ambition) and "lifestyle" (healthpleasureleisurefamily and spiritual development/meditation). This is related to the idea of lifestyle choice.

 

I wanted to further analyze and study from three perspectives, one – the relevance in Indian cultural context, second – The relevance in the age of "Work from home" and the third – in the context of device influence in our lives.

 

Indian Cultural Context:

 

We Indians have specific culture, specific outlook, mind set and working style. We love mixing the things. We are fine bringing home at work and taking work at home. While it may reflect our agility and flexibility, it also reflects the lack of discipline. Not having clear boundaries, also reflect the issues in accountability.

 

Another thing is our psychology of interpreting the things. Though the word/concept is “Work Life Balance”, We conveniently assume it about life and tend to dilute the fact that it equally emphasize about work. Even in the word “Work Life Balance”, “Work” comes first than “Life”. I refrain from generalizing this subject but I have experienced this with lot of people in my professional career. I am not questioning our intelligence and dedication. To be honest, we have most intelligent and dedicated people.

 

Work from Home:

 

When boundaries wise, work and home are mixed or blurred than how to strike balance in something that is already mixed? When you exclusively work from home, physical boundaries between work and your personal life can feel virtually non-existent. Even if you're organized, it can still be difficult to successfully manage your career and a household in the same space.

If this concept is best for specific type of domains or jobs? If we are having the advantage to quickly adopt and excel in this working style? The context that I have discussed above qualify Indians to be best in “Work from Home”.

 

Influence of Devices:

 

France has already given workers the 'right to disconnectfrom work emails outside of their contracted hours in a bid to ease pressure and offer a better work-life balance. Workers will be able to ignore telephone calls and emails from their bosses during evenings and weekends in an attempt to help them have more of a social life outside of their working week.

 

If we introduce a right to disconnect but not reduce the workload for those under pressure, managers will just ignore it or find a way of staying connected.

 

However, I learned through a latest study about the invasion or influence of devices in our daily life. Today, when so much work and leisure time involve staring at screens, I see a different struggle arising: a struggle to find a healthy balance between technology and the physical world, or, for short, “tech/body balance.” So attached are we to our devices that it’s not unusual to have your phone with you at all times.


Conclusion:

 

There is no perfect, one-size fits all, balance you should be striving for. The best work-life balance is different for each of us because we all have different priorities and different lives.

Your best individual work-life balance will vary over time, often on a daily basis. The right balance for you today will probably be different for you tomorrow. The right balance for you when you are single will be different when you marry, or if you have children; when you start a new career versus when you are nearing retirement.

 

However, at the core of an effective work-life balance definition are two key everyday concepts i.e. daily Achievement and Enjoyment.


(This blog was originally published on LinkedIn. It has been re-posted here with prior permission from Hilal Khan.)


(Image Courtesy: Pixabay.com)

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Hilal Khan

Hilal Khan is VP and Operating Head-IT at Honda Cars India Ltd....

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