How to make work-life balance work

Work-life balance, says Nigel Marsh, is too important to be left in the hands of your employer. At TEDxSydney, Marsh lays out an ideal day balanced between family time, personal time and productivity — and offers some stirring encouragement to make it happen.

8 Comments leave a comment below

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this!!! So many important points, and finally someone offering some honest and damn straight arguments about our work-life development as a society…! Will definitely be passing this on – forget about college; this is the golden ticket to success and happiness! Thank you for posting!

  2. Every time I come across inspiring videos like this one, I’m waiting for the soppy music to come up, almost reminding me how much movie like they sound. When it’s not, actually. Personally, even if this is 10 years too early, I just hope I’ll be able to see it coming and do something about it.

    Thanks for sharing, indeed.

  3. This is so true. What an amazing speach about the things that should be prioritized in our lifes. “If you don’t define them someone else is going to do it for us & might not like it” that is so true.

  4. Who the heck gets to take a year off to “Seek balance”. I’m not encouraged, I’m furious. “We all need to be more balanced!!!! ” Sing us a new one. The day somebody tells us HOW to be more balanced, then will I be amazed. Even his example of the best day ever involved him leaving work early. Heck, even his example of what to give up, namely “buying things we don’t need to impress people we don’t like” speaks to people who are well off.
    I remain unimpressed. Most people don’t work the kind of jobs where you can take off early. Most people work crap jobs, and part-time ones at that, because no company wants to pay for benefits if they can help it. They don’t have a year’s wages saved up: most likely they’re in debt already what with the car breaking down and the random ER visit. But they shouldn’t look to the government for help, no no, they should look within and, um… decide to take off work, because then their boss will decide to hire them full-time and give them healthcare? If we look deep within our selves and put family first, our local governments will suddenly supply public transit?

    What, exactly, is he saying we should do? What practical, actionable advice has he given?

    Here’s a speech I want to hear- How shall we then balance work and home when we’re working two jobs just to make rent? How do we experience a fulfilling marriage when you have to work opposite shifts as your partner. How to afford healthy food when there are never ever ever coupons for produce. How do you get out of the house with your children when the limited time you have away from work is taken up by laundry and food prep and vacuuming and other tasks that require you to be in it? How do you make your family happy to eat rice for the third time that week? When the second-hand stores don’t have clothes in your son’s size, how do you get new clothes as cheaply? There’s an amazing speech I’d love to hear.

    TED should be renamed People Of Ostentatious Privilege Intensely Navel Gazing.

    Or not. I’m feeling jealous and embittered and I just wanted to put my two cents in. I don’t mean to hurt people’s feelings. It just feels like a slap in the face to have balanced defined as giving up stuff you don’t need, when I don’t even have the things I need.

  5. Quality of life is not about how much money you have…

  6. Easy to say when you have it.

  7. amy, spot on! exactly what i was thinking as well.

  8. This was such an inspiring post. It’s good to hear the ideal scenario and then figure out how to make it work in your own life. This is a war I have in my head all day everyday. When do I let go of work and then live my life? How can I give 100% to everyone all the time? I saw my parents struggle through this and now it’s my turn.

    I see people at work who are overworked and under-appreciated but they still work weekends and late into the night for jobs they strongly dislike while knowing they are not going to grow in the company. I feel like an alien who demands clear boundaries. Upon starting my new position, I clearly explained to my boss my priorities: 1-family/ close friends, 2-my health, 3-my job. I work my butt off when I’m here, but when work is done, I have other things to do. I am still struggling to put my self in a position to be able to have the flexibility I desire. It’s been a lot of hard work and sacrifice, and will continue to be for awhile, but it is something I strive for everyday. (p.s. And trust me, I’m not making the big bucks.)