Saturday, May 17, 2008

finding a balance

T. Scott has a very good post on work/life balance. One of the things that can be challenging in an academic library (and no doubt in other types of libraries, too) is that you can never sit back and say "There, I'm done." You can finish a project, sometimes - though most of mine seem to be ongoing commitments that need constant care and feeding. But there's always more to do, and in this wired world there is no real demarcation between "work" and "the rest of my life." He says -

I don't have a "life outside of work." I have a life. It's comprised of many things -- many responsibilities, many joys, a handful of deep sorrows, a continual sense of wonderment as the days unfold. I never stop being the library director, but I never stop being the musician, friend, grandfather, lover, writer, or endlessly curious little boy, either.

When a "job" is what you go to for eight hours a day, five days a week, within rigid time & place boundaries, I suppose it makes psychological sense to think of "work" and "life" as two separate things. But in the networked world in which we now live, for many people that time & space separation simply doesn't exist. It certainly doesn't for me. When I go to Peebles, whether I'm playing guitar or talking about health information, I'll just be living my life as best I can.

That sounds very healthy to me.

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