Work/Life Balance… or Blend?

How do you think about your approach to your personal time management?

A couple of years ago I heard something on the Manager Tools podcast that made me sit up and think – that you shouldn’t think about “work/life balance,” but “work/life choice.” Their message was that you have control over how you use your time; that “balance” wasn’t the right end goal, but rather you should choose how you want to prioritize things.

Personally, I’ve chosen to prioritize work for the last few years. Balance went out the window, along with many of my other hobbies. I’ve found that choice hard to live with mentally at times.

However, at PodCamp Toronto this weekend, I encountered another way of thinking about things that really made sense to me. As Rachel Segal tweeted, Leona Hobbs suggested we should be thinking about work/life blending, not balance. While I unfortunately wasn’t in Leona’s presentation, the concept itself spoke to me.

This is so simple, it’s brilliant. Unless, through some extreme effort, you can completely shut-out your personal life from your time at work, the two will overlap. What’s more, the more you are passionate about the work you do, the more that “work” BECOMES “life.”

This fits perfectly for me – I often say that my day doesn’t feel like work, and my activities outside work often closely follow the things I do in the office. So, work and life blend smoothly for me – that’s why I’m happy with the choice I made.

Does this make sense to you? How does this fit with how you see your time?

Dave Fleet
Managing Director and Head of Global Digital Crisis at Edelman. Husband and dad of two. Cycling nut; bookworm; videogamer; Britnadian. Opinions are mine, not my employer's.