Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Can You Separate Your Personal Life From Your Work Life?

"It has been an evolution, but I am now a true believer in bringing our whole selves to work. I no longer think people have a professional self for Mondays through Fridays and a real self for the rest of the time. That type of separation probably never existed, and in today's era of individual expression, where people constantly update their Facebook status and tweet their every move, it makes even less sense. Instead of putting on some kind of fake "all-work persona," I think we benefit from expressing our truth, talking about personal situations, and acknowledging that professional decisions are emotionally driven."

I'm currently reading Sheryl Sandberg's book ,"Lean In (Women, Work, and The Will To Lead)," and re-reading parts, which is why I haven't finished it yet. She has some interesting points. From reading it's clear she has made a lot of accomplishments, but at the same time has been judged for a lot of her accomplishments. This book has made me ponder success in so many ways, but of course to think about success you have you think about how it is all set up from the time we start working.

From the time we start working, we are told to focus on work. Get the job done. Dress accordingly. Leave our outside circumstances at the door. When we are at work, the task at hand is all that matters. However, situations outside of work is real. Bills are always due, food is always needed for us to continue to physically be healthy, there is always someone who is expecting more than we can give them at the time, and mental rest is always important. While we need to make money in order to take care of our natural survival needs, we also need to have fun in order to stay healthy. There has to be a balance in all parts of life, so it's never actually possible to shut off one part when we are somewhere else.

However, that is never what anyone is taught upon getting the job, which leads me to the question at hand. Can you ever really separate your personal life from your work life? As Sheryl Sandberg said we live in the age of constantly updating our lives for everyone to see, but at the same time we live in a world where people think logic and emotions are two separate things that can be left in two separate places.

If we can't separate our personal lives from our work lives, why is this still taught in Corporate America?

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