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life balance… some of everything in every day

May 28, 2019

As a society we talk a lot about “work-life balance”.  In most cases, it seems to be something elusive that we are striving for – something never quite attained.  Recently, I read or heard someone propose that our current idea of work-life balance maybe is not the goal, but rather it should be something closer to work-life integration.  Overall I’m not sure when we talk about work-life balance we are all taking about the same thing or hoping for the same outcome.  But in the past week, I’ve had a new insight into the idea of life balance and how that includes “work” (however, you might define that in your life).

The last post I wrote spoke about the need to do what was the best thing to be doing on a particular day.  The ideas in this post, build on that idea a little bit.

What I’ve observed lately, is that balance in life means that each day has some work and some play.  And on a particular day the proportion of each will vary.  Some days have more work, some days have more play.  But all days have both.  I wonder if our modern society, where most people have structured work that tells them they work 5 days and play for 2 days a week, is not particularly conducive to finding balance.  It can lead us to think that there are work days and play days. It can lead us to be frustrated with the sun shines on the work days and rains on the play days.  It can lead us to feel pressure to fill our play days with play, and our work days with work, when maybe our 40 hours of work would be better spread over 7 days.

This insight has come, in part, by more closely being in tune with the life routines of a farmer.  For a farmer (at least a farmer with animals), there is at least some work that needs to be done every day.  But there is no sense of a “day off” or a day entirely for play.  There are just days with less or more work and subsequently days with less or more play.

Perhaps work-life balance can better be achieved on a 24 hour cycle vs a weekly cycle?  And more likely, perhaps life balance isn’t a one-size fits all concept, but something each of us needs to figure out personally.  Because as with many things in life, there is “another way” of doing things.

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One Comment
  1. Susan Barrington permalink

    Great post today, still trying to figure out if gardening is work or play!! My back tells me its not play but I so enjoy the time spent!! Thanks Megan. As usual, good inspiration for us all.

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