What is a good work-life balance?

My third sector clients often seek help with restoring their ‘work-life balance’. They’re mostly very committed. They have heavy work loads, put in long hours and take work home – often. But what are they really asking for? What do they mean by a better work-life balance?

Most people would say that a good work-life balance is a balance between the hours spent on your work and your personal life. When the former tips overly into the latter, we don’t have a good work-life balance.

But in my experience of coaching third sector clients I’d say there’s much more to it. It’s not just a question of hours. If you work ten minutes a day but those ten minutes take up so much of your energy that you need to spend the rest of the time recovering that’s not too balanced, is it?

I’d say there are four parts to having a good work-life balance:

1. A satisfactory balance between the hours spent on your work and on your personal life.

2. A satisfactory balance between the amount of physical and emotional energy needed for your work and your personal life.

3. A satisfactory balance between the various aspects of life which are important to you – eg career/ambition, family, fun and interests, spirituality, exercise etc, so that no one aspect dominates.

4. Having a sense of purpose and fulfilment in your life.

I work with my clients on all these four aspects. We learn practical time management and prioritising techniques to tackle the first. We do deeper ‘know yourself’ work to discover how they can find the latter.

If you are concerned about the effect a poor work-life balance is having on you or your staff contact me here or call 0208 772 7807 for a chat about how I can help.

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