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Work-Life Balance

While browsing on LinkedIn the other day, I stumbled across the following quote posted by a shared connection,

“There is no such thing as work-life balance. Everything worth  fighting for unbalances your life.” -Alain de Botton

I felt uneasy after reading it mostly because it goes against most of the professional advice I have received to date.  Also, it is straight up depressing.  The thought of a lifetime full of imbalance in hopes to ultimately achieve professional success feels discouraging.  This quote really made me take a look at my own work-life balance as I go in to my third year of practicing law.  I found myself wondering if this guy was right. Is it really impossible to be successful and have a healthy balance between your work and personal life?  After giving it some thought, I would respectfully disagree with Alain de Botton’s position.  Instead, I would argue that every individual needs to find a work-life balance that works for them, not what works for their colleagues or other successful corporate figures.  I feel lucky to work in a corporate atmosphere where a healthy work-life balance is encouraged, I realize that is not always the case.  However, part of seeking the right balance may require you to find a corporate environment that allows you to attempt to strike a balance between your work and personal life.  The key is to determine what you ultimately want out of your life.  Some people do not desire having a family, friends or children, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.  Then there are those who want to have a family, close relationships with friends as well as a successful professional life.  I know it is a possibility because I see it all around me.  For me, it is a no-brainer, I want to have a successful, long-lasting career in law while maintaining a healthy relationship with friends and family.  I refuse to compromise one in order to have the other.  I challenge you to do the same.

 

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