Friday, December 16, 2011

Balancing Solo

Occasionally I hear the catch phrase "work-life balance." It's often used in the same sentence as "family." My colleagues with families have great built-in excuses for maintaining a healthy work-life balance - "my kid's birthday is this weekend" or "tonight is my anniversary." My work-life balance activities, on the other hand, don't sound quite so noble - "I have a tennis lesson this weekend" or "I have a Pilates class tonight."

This is not a slam against my married-with-children colleagues. I know plenty of FSOs with families who work late when necessary. But for single FSOs, it's too easy to ditch our non-work activities for something that may seem urgent (but is it really?).  I think it's even more important for single FSOs to make a concerted effort to maintain a non-work life. We don't have kids in play groups or spouses in book clubs to help us meet non-work friends. CLOs seldom recognize the unique needs of single FSOs. So in most cases we're on our own to develop a non-work life. That can be difficult.

The last few months have been insanely busy. I've missed a lot of Pilates classes and can't remember the last time I played tennis. Maybe my new year's resolution for 2012 should be to take better care of myself.  Yeah, right.


AMS said...


Anonymous said...

Heather, as a mom with two children, I am so in agreement with you. My excuses to take off from work are never "I need to run 5 miles", but more like: "My kid needs to go to the dentist".
I feel for you, and we're in the same boat: it is very hard to take time off for yourself because it makes you feel guilty....
Do it anyway. If you don't maintain your body and mind you will not be able to continue working for the department and that would be a loss.