Work, Life and the Happy Hyphen

I’ve had this subject on my mind for a very long time. Years in fact. I have tried to articulate what I was thinking and what was irking me on several ocassions. Blankness reigned!

Then, out of the blue, while pondering on something else, it clicked.

With that sort of build up it better be worth the wait, eh 😅

And the subject?


Cards on the table, certain aspects of the whole work+life+balance debate get me a bit hot under the collar. Always have done. Because of the 3B-Blues.


First, let’s agree that life is life. And that work, for many people around the world, is part of that life. Not a separate entity. An integrated part.

The ratio-like representation of work/life balance implying the opposite. Immediately creating a sense of imbalance. Fuelling potential dissatisfaction from the implication that when you’re working you’re not living.


It’s known that ratios and measures help you make comparisons, check progress, make discoveries. As long as you’re measuring what matters and you keep them fresh and relevant.

Seeing work and life as separate entities. Using the work/life ratio may lead you to creating an arbitrary benchmark. Is it one that’s healthy and helps you to thrive? Or just another ‘should’ to add to the list?


If you’ve worked with other people you know there are those who wear their strife like a badge of honour. So busy. So much work. No home life.

What if this work/life ratio becomes a new badge of honour to proclaim?

Well, it already has.

I know people working in organisational cultures where it’s seen as a triumph and a measure of commitment.

The Happy Hyphen

The part work plays in your life; the importance it has, is personal to everyone and it changes.

What I realised this week is that a simple shift in the way you use this work+life+balance combination can free you to make better choices, keep a fresh perspective and help you avoid the 3B-Blues.

And that shift?

Turn the slash to a dash.

Embrace the happy hyphen.

And reflect on your…

work-life balance instead.

And if you want accessible impartial support with your work-life come and join us at the Re-energising Your Career Hub.

Header image by Alexas Fotos on Pixabay

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