Every person I work with ultimately ends up seeing the link between what is happening in their home lives and how that is impacting them in their working worlds, and vice versa. Once that link becomes clear, it also becomes easier to understand how to shift something that isn’t working for them.
For example, let’s imagine that you are a working incredibly long hours. You arrive home, put the children to bed, maybe grab a bite to eat and then carry on with your work. Before you make it to bed yourself, one of the children wakes up and you are now focused on settling them. Finally, you fall asleep with the child by your side until the early hours when you jump up, shower and try to get ahead of the curve again. This really is an extreme example of home and work life merging into one. What could be possible if you focused on a clearer routine for yourself and the children? Or, perhaps what impact would it make if you could create some stronger boundaries around work coming home? Either shift is likely to make a large impact on both your mental health, your sleep and your family, which can only help to boost your performance on a greater level.
How about another instance: you are moving up quickly through your company and know that you need to stay on top of your game if you are to get to the position you really desire. As you pick up pace you let go of your usual commitment to exercise. It becomes harder to fit it in in the mornings. Gradually you are finding that the work is becoming more exhausting and you are beginning to feel resentful that you are missing your exercise. To really step up to the next level at work you need to be confident, and your confidence has begun to get away from you at times as the tiredness and lack of adrenaline show up instead. Recommitting to your exercise routine not only gives you energy but also boosts your confidence again and more than likely has a large impact on how you relate to others at home too. Chances are that a lack of confidence and energy is impacting your family/social life in ways you didn’t expect too.
There are millions of scenarios that demonstrate the real importance of acknowledging each of us as a whole person with one life, not a person with split personalities between who we are at work and who we are at home.
The question remains however, are companies willing to support their people to shift and improve their life outside of work to release the full potential of those people inside work? It is a fine line between supporting individuals to live their best life and be the best version of themselves and getting “too involved” for many employers. So, if you are an employer or a manager of people at some level, how do you manage this?
A culture of self-responsibility
The key really lies in creating a culture in which every person feels completely self-responsible. Imagine a workforce where the question regularly asked by everyone is “What can I do to make this better?” and “How can I create the most positive impact?”, rather than “Why is no one helping me?”. Self-responsibility also means being responsible for the environment in which you work, which lends itself to supporting the team around you to get the best out of them too. Try it out for yourself. See what can change and then begin to ask your team to do the same. What do they need to feel empowered to really be the best version of themselves across all areas of their lives?