Work/Life Balance! This can be a hot discussion topic among student affairs professionals. There are those that believe that achieving balance is impossible and others who believe that they have achieved balance; however, most folks probably fall somewhere in the middle.
For me it comes down to what exactly is Work/Life balance for me? I like many of you have many hats to wear: I’m a mother, a wife, a daughter, a sibling, an employee, an employer, a teacher; a community member . . . the list goes on and on.
So how do I attempt to conquer this concept called Work/Life Balance? I approach it the same way I balance my check book. Now some of you may be surprised to hear that during the course of a given month, my check book is not perfectly balanced. During the course of a month, I may write a check and forget to record it (yes I still pay bills with paper checks), or I use my ATM card and misplace the receipt, and perhaps on a few occasions, I’ve paid a bill before I’ve actually deposited money in the account and I’ve crossed my fingers and hoped that it all clears on time. However, despite my poor daily financial accounting, I do make sure that each month I make things right and balance my checkbook. I make sure that I have recorded every last transaction and accounted for all of my spending.
For me work/life balance works the same way – I do not attend to all of the demands of my busy life every day. Sometimes I overdraw on family time when work is busy, and sometimes I borrow from work time when my family needs me. I have even been known to take out emergency loans when I need “me” time. The point is when all is said and done, I am confident that when I sit back and examine how I allocate my personal resources, that just like my check book, at the end of the month I hold myself accountable and I have the “balance” that works for me.
-Beth Moriarty, Director, Residence Life and Housing