Monday, June 11, 2012

It's all a question of control

Work-life balance concerns balancing time, priorities and energies between your working life and your personal life – in which the ability to exercise choice and to have some degree of control and flexibility is all important.

But beneath this there are actually a whole range of balances that impact our well-being and ultimately our degree of satisfaction with our working and personal lives. As a quick self-assessment consider the following list and ask yourself what is the balance in your life? It’s not that these balances need to be 50/50, but too much on one side or the other, or a complete absence on one side or the other, may be an indication of something needing attention. Be aware also that many of these apply to both your professional and personal lives.

1. The balance of demands - between doing what you want to do and what others (employers and family) want you to do
2. The balance between being planned and scheduled on the one hand and being spontaneous and unplanned on the other.
3. The balance between the routine and the new.
4. The balance between fulfilling the basic needs in your life and fulfilling your dreams and aspirations.
5. The balance between being under pressure and being relaxed.
6. The balance between being on-line and available as opposed to off-line
7. The balance between being rational and being creative
8. The balance between planning your life and taking life as it comes.
9. The balance between following and leading (yourself and others)

Many people achieve a balance in these things by compensation - in other words, if their job is too routine they look for the new and exciting in the rest of their life, and the converse can also be true.

Ultimately, it is not your response to these questions that determines your work-life balance; it is your ability to influence the answers.

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