Thursday, August 29, 2019
Whether you're rebounding from vacation mode, barreling into new routines with back-to-school season, building a side hustle into something more, increasing the intensity of a countdown to a big event this fall, racing from the office to a nonprofit meeting or simply squeezing all you can into these last almost 4 weeks of the summer season, my client's words about the value of work-life integration ring true.
People often refer to work-life balance; yet, I believe work-life integration is more realistic. In thinking about "balance", I see a scale or seesaw, forcing a perception of costs needed for success, and I don't believe my "work" competes with my "life". Instead, the various elements regularly complement each other, each one adding value to the others with the ongoing mix of priorities. Although balance would be static, life is certainly not, and successful productivity requires flexible, fluid solutions to address one's ever-changing priorities for work, home, community or society and the realm of self-care for mind, body and spirit. As the various elements are layers on top of each other, the emphasis needed for each element continually fluctuates, and each layer enhances the others, making the sum greater than any part.
Here are ways to get starting putting work-life integration into effect for the results you desire:
1️⃣Account for your priorities in all elements of life via your one, individualized game plan on a daily, weekly and monthly basis.
2️⃣Aim for activities that accomplish wins (or improved performance) in multiple elements of life at the same time, like brainstorming a big pitch for work or listening to an audiobook at the same time as walking your dog.
3️⃣Acknowledge how the resources around you can help, like creating an organized workspace, outsourcing what needs to be done but not necessarily by you and utilizing any applicable technology tools that are available.
4️⃣Audit how you invest time regularly, making sure your activities align with your goals for greater success as well as less burnout.
Known as the Wharton Work/Life Integration Project, Stew Friedman's research at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania focuses on the interactions between all the elements encompassed in life, empowering each of us to be real, whole and innovative by integrating all elements to make each better.
The above from Joyce Chen of La Marca Prosecco gets to the heart of why work-life integration better enables crafting the lives we want to live. "I hate that 'balance' word. The reality is: It's a rhythm. We're in rhythms where it's high and it's low, it's high and it's low. And I think, in those rhythms, it's ok to let some things go for a little bit, and maybe you get back to it later."
As productivity is about efficiently working to effectively achieve results desired for all elements of life, the most powerful tools in the toolbox of highly successful individuals have been found to include flexibility, streamlining, resourcefulness and a focus on outcomes over the specific activities we "should" be doing.
What tools do you put to work for crafting the life you want to live, fueling what results you want, moving you towards achieving your priority goals and truly helping you organize for success?