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May 182010
Get the Balance Right

Image by Marquette La via Flickr

    Are you struggling to balance the demands of a busy career with a hectic personal life? Does it feel like you’re constantly juggling your commitments in a desperate attempt to squeeze everything into an impossibly short day?

    If the answer is yes, you’re not alone. Trying to find the perfect work-life balance is something that countless employees around the world wrestle with every day… but for many it simply isn’t working.

    The concept of work-life balance first entered the recruitment lexicon in the 1970s in an attempt to describe the issues faced by employees looking to divide their attention between their work commitments and their personal life. It’s since gained popularity among industry commentators, recruitment and careers experts, employees, and most recently with employers, who have started to view the panacea of work-life balance as a magic-bullet solution to employee dissatisfaction, absenteeism, and boosting productivity in the workplace.

    One of the main reasons that work-life-balance has become such a buzzword is that it resonates with so many people. Almost all of us know that overwhelming feeling of desperately trying to divide our finite attention between all of the things that matter to us. But although the work-life-balance concept has been around for nearly four decades, many of us are still struggling to manage our disparate commitments effectively; we fail in our quest for "balance", and ultimately everything suffers.

    According to business and lifestyle coach Ali Davies ( the main reason so many of us haven’t nailed the work-life balance conundrum is that the whole concept is fundamentally flawed.

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Jul 162009
the joys of working from home

Image by Ben McLeod via Flickr

Summer holidays are always a challenge for parents. Juggling the kids, summer camps, childcare, jobs and sundry other things is, frankly, exhausting.

When you work from home some of those things become easier… but there are a host of new problems to overcome. What do you do, for example, when you’re in the middle of a conference call with clients and your five-year-old erupts into your office bawling that her eight-year-old sister has whacked her? How do you meet pressing deadlines when you’ve got a seemingly perpetual stream of minor interruptions to deal with? Nettle stings, lost ferrets, sibling rivalry, outright warfare… you name it, it happens in the day of a work-from-home parent, and during the summer holidays it happens more.

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