Will You Be Working on That This Weekend?

“No!  I will be spending time with my family;  my amazing little girl, whom I only see 3.5 hours a day, and my husband,  with whom I get about half that amount of quality time.”  This was my desired response when asked this question from a colleague at work.  My actual response was a simple “No, I won’t be.” 
This question left me buzzing, antsy fingers and all, with the only possible remedy coming in the form of a good workout on the keyboard.  I wanted, and needed, to dig into this. 

Can a parent be successful and at the top of his/her game in all facets of life?

Let’s look at the main aspects of a typical person’s life:

  1. Family (children, partner)
  2. Extended Family (parents, siblings etc.)
  3. Career (hours at the office, overtime, networking etc.)
  4. Social
  5. Health & Wellness (exercise, nutrition, personal hygiene, hobbies)
  6. Sleep

This list is not presented in any particular order but the items do jump out at me as the six main components of one’s life.  Is it possible to perform the best you possibly can in all six areas or is it inevitable that one or more will suffer?  Do we need to dilute our performance, spreading out our energy and focus or can we achieve top results in all areas?

Am I expected to work on a project over the weekend?  Will I get ahead faster? Will my career suffer if I choose not to?  I don’t think you have to be a rocket scientist to know the answer to these questions is a big bold Yes!  So where to hone in?  This is obviously a choice made on a very individual level and personally my family comes first…but what area of my life is losing out because of that?

The words ‘balance’, ‘prioritization’ and ‘time-management’ seem to be key in answering these questions but first we need to find time, energy and focus to explore those areas to put our skills to the best possible use; and all this is making me dizzy.

What are your thoughts?  How are you finding harmony in your life?  Share your tips, ideas and thoughts and have a relaxing weekend!

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net photographed by Stefano Valle.

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7 responses to “Will You Be Working on That This Weekend?

  1. I agree that family comes first. I definitely think that one can only do so much and not be all things to all people (or to all components to one’s life). I think that when you have a family with a child or children, something has to give. I think Career takes the hit for me since it is the least important to me of the 5 you present. It still holds importance but the days of long hours, the odd Saturday in the office and stressing about of my next move up, have passed. Considering what I am giving those things up for, I’m not losing sleep over the decision. Sleep, BTW, should be number 6 on your list. It is a critical component of life and certainly takes a hit when there are not enough hours in the day for the other things. When that happens, though, the things you were sacrificing sleep for, in turn, inevitably get impacted. It’s certainly a challenge. Good post, City Mom!

    • You make an excellent point rctdot! So much that I am going to update this post with #6 – Sleep!
      May I ask if you are more content with you area of focus because you are well established in your career? What if you were just beginning your climb?

      • Thanks! Am I more content with my area of focus because I am well-established in my career? For sure! I might have made a different decision had I been younger or at an earlier stage in my career. I’m certainly glad that I wasn’t faced with that decision any earlier. I might have been forced to choose a less desireable option (for me, anyway). Had I chosen to work as hard as possible to progress in my career at the expense of family time, I’m not sure the gains would have been worth the sacrifice. But, there are so many factors involved, i.e. current financial security, life goals, long-term family goals, etc. Everyone would have a different perspective on why one choice is better than the other.

  2. Interesting Post CityMom 🙂 It’s too bad that working on the weekend is being expected of you. I know sometimes that does come up, but if it is something that can truly wait, then that pressure shouldn’t be placed on employees I don’t feel, depending on your job.

    I don’t have kids, so I don’t know what it’s like having to juggle that while working, but I do lead an extremely busy life with part-time University education (taking the maximum amount of courses a part-time student is allowed to take while working full-time) and on top of that, I also own rental properties and volunteer!

    Last year was probably my busiest year so far in school/work and I found that something had to give, which for me was my normal dedication to exercise. I found that I gained a fair bit of weight compared to my usual and I was constantly tired! I decided this summer when I had 1 month off that I was going to get back into shape, and so far I have kept my promise. I worked really hard all month and got back into a routine of making fitness a priority for myself. I selected night classes that could work around the Body Pump class at the gym that I like to go to so that I make sure I am continually working out throughout the school year this year and so far it has been going well!

    I also find now that I am more motivated to get other things done because I feel good about myself, I have more energy, and overall, I am not putting myself last anymore, so it seems like I am actually able to fit more in!

    I definitely think it’s about prioritizing though. I decided that my exercise was going to be a priority this year and so far it has been…something else will have to give at other times, but those things are things that I’m ok with taking the back burner to my higher priorities. In a perfect world, I could fit it all in, but sometimes you just can’t.

    • I agree with you on this Lindsay. I too put my excersise on the back burner and have surley paid for it. I hate to say it’s not a priority because it is but its not making it up there on my list. It consumes so much of my brain power during any given day that I could solve so many issues with just getting in better shape but I am not willing at this time to give up anything else.

      Your schooling is your “child” right now. You sound just as busy as us with kids so it’s good preparation for you.

      I should clarify too that I wasn’t expected to work on it…it was more a question…either way I know I would have done better had I said yes. 😦

  3. I come first. Then family, then other obligations. Sounds selfish, maybe, but it’s essential for me to put on my oxygen mask first, before helping my seatmates. Y’know? Because of this, I’ve chosen a part-time job with no dress code and a ten-minute commute. A lot of the stresses of work life are eliminated from my life, so I have energy for the things that really matter to me.

    • I think that’s a fantastic analogy…and perhaps some would say it appears selfish on paper but it’s not…it’s the whole idea behind you have to love yourself first before anyone else can love you. I’ve heard that saying “A happy wife is a happy life.” I’m thinking this must be true.

      Thanks for stopping by. I will be sure to stop in for a visit too.

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