Why do we keep using the phrase work–life balance? As my brilliant friend Markita Roberson said a long time ago, it should be life–work balance! Or, perhaps, just a life balance?
Logically, life itself comes before any activity of life. This logic seems to have been broken in the work-focused culture—and we say “work–life balance.”
I am not antiwork—quite the opposite. I enjoy work. The right work can be invigorating; productivity can sustain and enrich our lives. And not being able to work can be boring and, in many cases, downright terrifying.
And, yet, in another extreme, too much work can be overwhelming and downright terrifying as well.
Between the boredom and the overwhelm lies the magical, beautiful sensation of flow—being challenged in just the right way to stretch us and bring out our most creative, most productive selves. That sensation can occur when we are engaging in hobbies, but it can also occur when we do work that is well-matched to our strengths.