Career Moves



Claire Fox

Achieving Work-Life Symbiosis: Part 2

  • by Claire Fox
  • 24 Sep 2015

To celebrate National Work Life Week (21st – 28th September), Career Moves Group has teamed up with HR Director and Author Claire Fox to bring a series of guest posts exploring work life symbiosis.

In the first installment, Claire outlined the first stages of achieving Work Life Symbiosis. In this post she discusses the next two steps to being ‘True to Yourself’.

Stage Two: Live your Life by it

You should have a clear picture now of what matters the most to you – that was the easy part. The tough part is aligning your life behind it. Are you spending the amount of time with family, children, friends you want to be? Is your career in the place, or going in the direction, that you want it to be? Do you love your job? Are you getting as much exercise as you’d like? Have you ticked anything off your bucket list lately? If you can’t answer yes to these questions, it’s probably time to make some changes. Don’t be afraid – there are so many different approaches to life, work, child care and you just need to find the one that suits you best. In all my experience I have never come across anyone who made a significant change to align their life better to their priorities and ended up regretting it.

Stage three: Keep it front of mind

Being clear on what’s important at one point in time is relatively straight forward as long as you give it some time and attention. The trick now is keeping it front of mind. Sadly it often takes a life tragedy for people to stop and think. I don’t think it is unusual for individuals who have experienced a bereavement to say something along the lines of ‘this makes you think about what’s really important in life.’ And it does. You may suddenly have the realisation that the only important thing to you is people and love – your partner, your children, your best friends. And your big high salary but high-pressure job may not seem quite so important. You could have the opposite realisation of course. I used have a disagreement with a close friend back at Uni. She’d say ‘you’ll never lay on your death bed and wish you’d spent more time at work’ and I’d say ‘no, but you might lay there thinking I wish I’d travelled the world more, and spending more time at work might have meant you could have afforded to do that!’

Life is busy and hectic, and no matter how hard we try it’s easy to get caught on the treadmill of life, and have the days, weeks and months rush by. It’s easy to get stuck in a rut, and forget what we said really matters. Find a way to keep it front of mind – have a visual reminder like a picture on your fridge that represents what you care about most, take stock once a year and revisit what you said the previous year, talk to your friends and family about it so that you don’t loose sight. Whatever works for you, make sure you don’t forget!

To find easy to use tools and learn more about getting the most out of work and life read Work-Life Symbiosis: The Model for Happiness and Balance by Claire Fox.

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