Work is Life

Impact Coaches Inc. – Articles

Or why it’s important to embrace your job and find joy in it

Work life balance. Work integration. Balanced living. We hear these buzzwords often in the workplace. There’s a hidden connotation to them, however. One that suggests work opposes or gets in the way of happiness and balance.

It’s easy to see why. There are lots of times in our lives when we have too many commitments and feel overwhelmed. Our children are small. Or our parents are ill. A friend needs us. Or our spouse or partner does. And because work takes up so much of our days and weeks, it’s understandable to view it as the reason we can’t spend as much time on these other aspects of our lives.

It is tempting to think external things will make us happy, but happiness comes from finding joy in the environment we live in

We also have so many more choices than ever before. The Internet provides access to a world of opportunities for career alternatives. It can lead us to believe during tough times at work that the ideal job is out there somewhere. A role that can help us achieve that perfect balance. Find the fulfilment we’re lacking.

The idea that we can easily replace our current unhappiness with a new job is very alluring.

The concept of work life balance also sets up unrealistic expectations. There are so many reasons why we may not have balance today or this week or this month. It doesn’t mean we should change our job, get new friends, or find a new relationship. That’s because it’s not the external things in our lives that make us happy.

If we’re unsatisfied or overwhelmed, external changes will only distract us from or postpone the negative feelings for a while. But they’ll always be back, unless we deal with them. And no new job, friend or relationship can change that permanently.

See work as part of the richness and complexity of life

Instead, we can create a new mindset. One that sees work as part of the richness and complexity of life. Because to be truly happy, to feel the most satisfaction from life, we need to have easy days – and tough ones. Make mistakes and learn from them. Challenge ourselves and achieve outcomes that make us proud. Have a sense of industry and accomplishment from completing things and feel connected to the people we work with.

We spend 40 hours a week, from the age of 20 to 60, at work. It’s a huge part of our lives. So having a really good outlook around it is important to our satisfaction.

In fact, finding joy from our work during the positive times will help increase our happiness, satisfaction and fulfillment. And that can help us thrive even during the not-so-positive times.

Work is life. Just like our friends, parents, and marriage are life. And like those other parts, work is imperfect. Trying to minimize work or not make it intrude too much isn’t a helpful way of looking at this important part of our lives.

But embracing work and finding the joy in it, is.

Dive Deeper

The Road Less Travelled, by Scott Peck

Impact Coaches Inc. – Articles

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