We use worklife as one word because, for most of us in today’s 24/7 world, that is what it is – one word! A client of ours recently said – “I’m exhausted from trying to find balance.” Some still whine and moan about their inability to achieve “balance” but most of us have let that illusion fade and have embraced the “new normal” and are finding ways to integrate and synthesize the “2.0” reality.
And what we are finding is good news – not only can we do more professionally but also enrich our personal lives at the same time. The iPhone is a perfect example of the synergy created through the integration of technology, lifestyle and profession. I have instant access to my calendar, my calls (one-on-one, 3-way or online meeting), my calorie app, my audio book of the latest in management theory, my docs, my kids’ schedules, my boss, my clients and, most importantly, my Calm app so I can meditate and relax for bit in between meetings!
So where did the idea of trying to find balance come from? My thought is that it was a consequence of the Industrial Revolution. For the first time in history we ambled off to work at the factory until the whistle blew, and then we went home. Before that era our work and life were more like one thing – a farmer was a farmer 24/7, a seamstress was a seamstress 24/7, a hunter, a baker, a candlestick maker – they all (and their families) lived their work and worked their lives by necessity as there was no communications portal or technology that allowed for anything else.
According to Merriam-Webster.com the word “integrate” means “to form, coordinate, or blend into a functioning or unified whole.” Our conclusion is that worklife integration focuses on incorporating the different areas of one’s life to create a whole picture. The boundaries between one’s professional and personal life are constantly blurring, interweaving and reinventing. The idea that a person's work life and personal life will not intermingle is unrealistic.
Most people share a simple and similar desire to create easy joy and meaningful engagement between the interconnected roles, relationships and responsibilities that make up their lives. We now have the privilege and satisfaction of choosing and integrating what gives us satisfaction, however, as with all tools, they are only as good as we use them.
This is WorkLife 2.0. Call (text, email, tweet or whatever) us – we can help you find yours.