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  • Writer's pictureDavid Peppler, Sr.

The Myth of Work/Life Balance

Yes, it is a myth. The concept is fine - people want to stop bringing work home where it interferes with family life and activities. Work becomes this consuming fire that just keeps eating until it burns up as much of our time as it can digest.

The truth is, we typically work 8 hours a day (still a thing, right?) and will average an hour commuting. Add a lunch break and you're talking about 10 of your 16 waking hours already spoken for. Let's say you spend 2 hours waking up, organizing yourself, maybe feeding, dressing and shipping out children to school. If children are not in the mix, maybe working out or just vegetating to the morning news with coffee and pop tarts.

This leaves 4 hours for your evening if you adhere to 8 hours of sleep at night. Put all of that on a scale, and there is no such thing as creating an actual balance.

The real issue here is priorities. How can you determine what needs to be done? What is the most important thing for you to achieve on any given day? Week? Month? Year? Most of us easily apply those questions to our tasks, education, or work lives. How can you apply the same principles to your personal life?

Your priorities for "down time" will depend upon your actual life outside of work. Single parents will have far more responsibilities with children than a recent retiree who has quickly become bored. I recommend starting with a simple list. What are some things you want to accomplish? What time frame do you have in mind?

This could be a larger conversation about establishing a rhythm of life. What needs to happen on a regular basis? How often? What is your hoped-for outcome for setting these priorities?

You may end up with an entire goal-setting experience, or decide to map out a highly functional schedule that would make your most OCD-minded friends proud. Regardless of your next steps, think of what matters the most. It is the best place to begin.

From the Coach:

  • What are the top 3 priorities in your personal life?

  • How do you keep track of them?

  • What are you doing this week to work toward them?

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