Seven Tips to Attain Purpose and Happiness in Life and Work - Slide 6

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When the company needs you to really push, push hard. (And do it cheerfully.) This way, when you need to slow down the pace or take time off, they’ll be willing to work with you. Think of it as making deposits into a bank account. By willingly and happily accepting the challenge of a difficult project or client or by working long hours to meet an important deadline, you make deposits in the company’s “hard work” bank account. When you need to make a withdrawal, whether it’s for a family emergency or just a much-needed break, you’ll have plenty of goodwill with the higher-ups in your account and they won’t begrudge you for taking the time off.

If there’s one thing that just about every IT professional on the planet can identify with, it’s the difficulty in striking a work/life balance. The nature of the job is such that not only is there no such thing as a 40-hour work week, there’s no such thing as a week in which you really know how many hours you’ll be working. So how on earth do you create a balance under those extraordinary circumstances?

According to workplace consultant and author Jon Gordon, you don’t. In fact, he says, you need to throw the idea of striking a work/life balance out the window, because it’s unattainable, and striving for it will lead to nothing but frustration and disappointment. Instead, Gordon advises that you think of it as establishing a natural work/life rhythm, much like the rhythm of the seasons.

Gordon, whose most recent book is “The Seed: Finding Purpose and Happiness in Life and Work,” has come up with a list of seven tips on how to attain that elusive goal.

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