What’s the right balance between work and non-work time? The traditional 9-5 has slowly disappeared with the emails and zoom and texting going far beyond traditional business hours. We asked members of our community to share with us how they think about work-life balance.

Kate Weed | Founder, Tapas Marketing

I got asked this very question when I spoke at the Thinking Forward conference at my alma mater, the University of Arizona, last year. I gave a presentation on my journey to becoming a marketing business owner and one of the students asked me about work/life balance. I don’t believe in balance. Oxford dictionary defines balance as an even distribution of weight enabling someone or something to remain upright and steady. When broadly applied to the idea of work/life balance, it sounds like if you just work X hours a week, spend Y hours with family, and do self-care Z hours a week, some how you’ll be happy and fulfilled. I have never found that to be true. I prefer to think of my career as having seasons. When I started my business in 2018, I experienced a work season. Read more>>

Johnny Kerr | Artist & Arts Educator

My work-life balance has drastically changed over the years as I went from working as a professional graphic designer (up until the Great Recession when I had to switch careers to keep my family afloat) to an arts educator, all while my family was growing and life circumstances changing. As an educator with a demanding job, the lines between work and life have blurred some. On one hand, my experiences teaching and interacting with my students inform my approach to art while on the other hand, my art-making also impacts my pedagogy. Additionally, working a full-time job that does not result in art-making (I’m facilitating an environment where my students are making art, but I don’t get to make art myself during work hours) means that I must carve out time in my personal life to keep moving forward as an artist. Read more>>

Tom Leveen | Novelist and Writing Instructor

I don’t believe in “work-life balance” anymore. I can’t recall where I first read that this idea was misleading (it may have been Tim Ferriss), but I think it’s true. We can generally break our lives up into “seasons” for sure, but the idea of “balance” is frankly too difficult for most of us. Some days, or weeks, or months, it’s all about the business. If you or someone you love gets sick, everything shuts down and we focus on that. All caught up with work, or feeling the effects of not getting a break? Time to take one. Maybe a long one. “Balance” suggests we can readily break up our physical, relational, emotional, mental, financial, and spiritual lives into neat percentages. Maybe some people can, but when I try this, it goes badly, and all areas suffer. When I think about putting things into seasons, the “balance” suddenly happens naturally. Read more>>