What do you think of this (emphasis is mine)?
Flextime, dress-down Fridays and paternity leave mask the core issue: certain job and career choices are fundamentally incompatible with being meaningfully engaged, on a day-to-day basis, with a young family. Reality is people working long hard hours at jobs they hate to buy things they don’t need to impress people they don’t like.
Sure, you say, work-life balance is a great idea, but I’m busy. And there’s no web app for it. You can’t do it with a spreadsheet. Wait – can I get an app for my iPhone?
Nigel Marsh – author of the quote above, and the books Fat, Forty and Fired and Overworked and Underlaid – quit work for a year, stayed home instead, and discovered:
work-life balance is easy when you have no work.
The video here is 10 minutes of Nigel on work-life balance at the recent TED Sydney. It’s funny, it’s insightful, it’s short, and it makes a lot of sense.
(if you don’t see it here, click here for the original)
I suppose it’s ironic that I like the following quote, given that I’ve been an employer for 20 years, but I do; I think it’s good advice:
Never put the quality of your life in the hands of a commercial corporation. I’m not talking about just the bad companies, but all companies. It’s what they do, even the good, well-intentioned companies. Daycare in the office for example is so you spend more time at the office.
And he finishes with this summary (emphasis is mine again):
Small things matter. It’s not dramatic upheaval, it’s small things. If enough people do it, we can change society’s definition of success, so we can all have a better view of what a life well lived looks like.
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