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Blend vs. Balance

The web has definitely changed the way people live. In many ways it has made our lives easier. It has enabled people to work away from the office and stay in touch with friends and family that you may have not done so before. It makes it more difficult in the fact that you can stay connected wherever you are and that may lead some to burnout. What's important and not always easy to do is to find a blend or balance for your work and personal life.

"Connect" talks about blend rather than balance. "A blend fluidly mixes just the right amount of each activity ensuring they complement and support each other whereas balance hints at setting your isolated activites against each other (Connect, pg. 258). You need to be careful with blending in that it can sometimes leave you unable to fin a place where your work stops and that can potentially harm your personal life. Balance is an even mix of work and personal activiites. As with blending, "balancing your work with your personal life suggests that work and personal life are separate and they have to be set off against each other" (Connected, pg. 259). Ideally it is important to find a style that best suits the individual.

I have noticed that for myself it is hard to find a balance for my work life since the web makes it easy to stay connected no matter where you are. In the past before the web people couldn't have as easily gotten work related things accomplished away from the office. Now it's almost impossible to get away from it. Many times in the evening or away on vacation I find myself checking my work email or doing work related projects on my computer. I have many times felt too consumed with my work and has led me to burn out. If you don't set boundaries for yourself it can negatively impact your life.

What I have done in the past was isolate my work and personal activities from each other. I have made an effort to get better at that. Especially since taking this class I have started working on our assignments during free moments at work. I have also been able to keep in touch with colleagues and friends with Twitter and Facebook. Fortunately the connectedness of the web has allowed such a mix.

Comments

Hello Tracy, I totally agree with your first paragraph. You had mentioned burnout in that paragraph, and that is something that I try to avoid--burnout is no fun! One of my former managers at work, who was one of the greatest managers and moreover person, was always looking out for his employees and was genuinely concerned for us that we would not get burned out. I feel sometimes that the internet makes us connected 24-7 and thus somewhat makes us available anytime. Interestingly enough, you had touched on blend and balance. That totally helped me in clarifying the two. Balance is key! Thanks for your post above and all your posts and always helping me understand more. Take care and all the best!