Life is a balance of holding on and letting go. — Rumi
Work/life balance is something we hear often. But what exactly is it? And how do we find it?
According to Webster, balance is "a condition in which different elements are equal or in the correct proportions". If we look at this definition, I'm not so sure work/life balance is achievable.
Think about a balance scale. Now let's put work on one side and all other aspects of life on the other. Is it balanced? Probably not. In order to keep it balanced you have to continually add and/or remove something from each side. Keeping it balanced can feel like a constant struggle. In most lives, present priorities make one side (work/life) of the scale tip out of proportion. Then another priority arises and the scale tips again. Let's look at it differently, focusing on work/life sustainability instead of balance. Looking at where we are now and making it sustainable.
Presentation due this week, so the scale tips in that direction. Knowing this too shall pass, instead of using your energy trying to figure out how to balance everything, how about letting something go and allowing your energy to be with the priority (presentation). When the next priority arises, shift your energy there.
Acknowledge and accept that you can't do everything all the time. Letting go of the "do it all guilt" can be so freeing. You might feel out of balance from time to time, and that's okay. There really are no rules. It's not about what other people do, it's about what you need to do to make it work for you.
Work/life sustainability; Allowing things to fall into place instead of forcing them to fit.
Diane Frankel-Gramelis - YSPH Student Wellness Counselor (non-clinical)
Here to help students find practical ways to cope with stress, reduce anxiety and cultivate positive healthy habits.