Finding balance

Where's the balance?

Where’s the balance?

Many people have sacrificed their family lives for the sake of their career, often without even realising it. We know the type; those that start early and finish late, work at home and spend time in the office on the weekend.

They spend so much time on work that their families grow away from them; when it’s too late and they realise what’s happened there’s a feeling of regret. I know this to be true because I was one of them; staying at work that extra hour, working on Saturday morning instead of spending time with the family, and on holidays spending too much time on the phone or email rather than enjoying the time away.

Regrets, I have a few, well, maybe more than a few. My daughter was born when I was 28 and just starting to hit my straps as a young corporate executive. I rationalised my decisions as being ‘best’ for the family. It was just this ‘one time’ again and again. My wife had stopped work so I had the responsible to be successful and climb the corporate ladder to provide our family with the resources we needed to prosper.

I continued to work hard, travelling overseas for weeks at a time and putting in extra time believing that this was the best for us all. I was wrong. My second daughter and then my son were born as I continued my relentless pursuit of more.

And did the corporates appreciate this? No, the more I did the more they expected. I climbed the ladder all the way to the top. I was finally a CEO and now I’d ‘made it’. My 20 year journey was over and instead of finding Nirvana I found only a desolate wasteland.

Now the pressure was really on. The Board didn’t care about a global financial crisis, they wanted results. So I worked even harder, was preoccupied at home and highly stressed.

But still they wanted more. ‘We know you’re on holidays but …’ that was it, I’d hit the wall and couldn’t keep up the pace so had to back off. Then I was replaced. Was it worth it? Of course not, I regret the times I missed during the first ten years of my children’s lives and the feeling of letting my family down. And I’m lucky because I still have them and I still have time. What about you?


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5 Responses to “Finding balance”

  1. adamnrave Says:

    Maybe the balance comes now, WLBooB? I hope so. (PS That’s ‘out of’).

  2. paulhassing Says:

    This is one of your finer works, WLB2. I’ve been waiting for you to put yourself into this blog and it was jolly well worth it. Thank you for such a candid and fascinating share. I don’t have any answers, but I’m sure as hell now listening even more closely to your questions. Kind regards, P. 🙂

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