Work Life Balance – Have WE Become the Product?

Have you ever said a sentence using the words ‘work life balance’?
 
It seems that we all are on a quest to be high performing at work, have a quality home/family life, perfect fitness and plenty of ‘me’ time.
 
The term ‘work life balance’ has been examined and challenged and discussed by many people over the last few years… even to the point of questioning if work and life can be split. It continues to hold the attention of many workplaces when they discuss flexibility and balance, engagement and mental health
 
But it feels like the term ‘work life balance’ is over and has given way to the term wellness and wellbeing. The term is used in HR marketing material for teams and organisations. Wellness has become both a need and controversially a product….
 
“We are being sold on the need to upgrade all parts of ourselves, all at once, including parts that we did not previously know needed to be upgraded”. (Cederström and Spicer)

  • Is ‘work life balance’ actually BS?
  • Is it actually attainable?
  • Are we being sold an unattainable and stressful ideal?
  • Should we just ignore the hype, turn off our social media and get on with it?
  • Is self care just a narcissistic term and action?

I’ve got to say this topic intrigues me and the questions above are just some of the questions I posed to Felicity Harley, journalist, and author of Balance and other BS.
 
We debated whether we are being sold wellness and balance as a product and she shared evidence that that might be the case.

We welcome you contribution to this important debate.