Tomorrow morning I'm speaking to a group of women. What these women have in common is the fact that they will all go home to toddlers and one of the things they want to know is how I happened to raise three amazing kids while working. How did I manage that illusive work-life balance?
And this is what I'll tell these women-- balance is overrated. After all, think about it. Is work not a valid part of your life?
But if balance isn't the answer, what is? According to Bob Patten, the answer is purpose. Caring about what you do and living within your passion and skill. This applies to all areas of life. The trick is to live fully. My kids knew that I enjoyed my work. They also knew I loved them. There were school programs I missed for work responsibilities and vocational opportunities I passed up because of family responsibilities. There was give and take .I didn't always do it all right, but I gave myself fully to work, family, and other life-giving pursuits.
So, think about it. Don't downplay passion. Live purposefully. Give recklessly of yourself both inside and outside the boundaries of work.