C2 Writing Arguments against Work-Life Balance

Arguments against Work-Life balance.

You read this article in an online magazine:

According to a recent survey by Ernst & Young, one-third of full-time workers globally say that managing work-life has become increasingly difficult. 9,700 workers in the United States, Germany, Japan, China, Mexico, Brazil, India, and the United Kingdom revealed that they are working longer hours and harder than ever before, leaving very little time for much else. One could argue that we’re living in a golden age of workplace stress, largely due to the changing role of work in our lives. When work and life blend into each other, how can you begin to achieve an equilibrium that supports your physical, emotional, and mental health? Perhaps it’s time to resist the binary construction (or fallacy) that is work-life and consider a new framework altogether.

In an article for TechCrunch, Blake Commagere challenges the contemporary concept of work-life balance. He says that the problem is not that we don’t have a balance – the problem is that work is our life, and we are trying to incorrectly define the “life” portion as this separate thing for which we have to make time.

When your work is your life, there’s no such thing as work-life balance. The traditional aspects of the 40-hour workweek are dying, and we must change if we want to increase our productivity and support our well-being. How you change is up to you, but sticking to the same old formula isn’t going to cut it. From an entrepreneur’s perspective, Kevin O’Leary, in an interview for Business Insider supported Commagere’s idea that there is no such thing as balance: «If you’re going to take the path of an entrepreneur…you have to sacrifice some stuff, which is just unfortunate. But that’s just the nature of what we’re all dealing with… The sacrifice is there’s no bounds during the period you’re growing the business».

The key to finding balance is to be good to yourself in a way that supports your work. Eat well. Sleep well. Exercise. Nurture healthy relationships. And stop trying to tell yourself that you need to cram more convenience and experiences into the “remainder” of your 168 hours of the week. If you feel possessed by creativity and want to get your idea or product out to the world, it’s important to adjust your expectations: you can have work-life balance, as long as the two are one-and-the-same.

TASK. Write a letter to the editor responding to this article and stating whether you agree with the point of view expressed in it (200 words).

Examine the phrase “work-life balance.” It’s predicated on two assumptions:
1) Work and life are distinct entities.
2) The “life” elements are equally, if not more, important than the work elements.