It seems to me that our society has lost the plot in relation to how it allows work life to impact the things we value most in life. The evidence can be seen in things such as lack of personal freedom, damaged family life and relationships, fractured communities, social problems, health adversely affected, feeling unfulfilled, to name but a few. Has work life become a disease creating a sick society?

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Has Work Life become a Disease?

Have work life and business become a disease?It seems to me that our society has lost the plot in relation to how it allows work life to impact the things we value most in life.

The evidence can be seen in things such as lack of personal freedom, damaged family life and relationships, fractured communities, social problems, health adversely affected, feeling unfulfilled, to name but a few.

Has work life become a disease creating a sick society?

We have created a society where work is the dominant force in our lives. Every other aspect of life dances around it. Things that are most important to us play second fiddle to work. What our society has created is a classic case of the tail wagging the dog.

Does all this sound a bit dramatic? Maybe it is. But it does raise a serious question:

What is the purpose of working?

Now don’t get me wrong, I am not anti work in any way shape or form – far from it. I love my work and really value running my own business.

But I believe that work life could, and should, be a fantastic tool for enhancing all areas of life. Maybe this is putting it over simplistically, but here is what I believe the purpose of working should be:

  • To enhance personal freedom and really living life fully
  • To support and constructively contribute to family life, and relationships
  • To allow communities to flourish in a healthy way

It’s time to create a new reality.

Imagine an economy built and measured on how work impacts personal freedom, family life, relationships, health, wellbeing, fulfillment, communities and how much it contributes to social problems.

Maybe you think these are just the rantings of an idealist. I would beg to differ. Here is why:

The economy, society and work life, as it stands, has been created by people over time. This means something new and better can be created by people over time. And thereby lies the key – by people! The solution lies in each of us taking personal responsibility for creating something better.

So, I think it is time for a work life revolution. It is time to create something better for ourselves, our families, our relationships, our health and our communities.

The work life and personal life you really want doesn’t happen by chance – it happens by design. Leaving it to chance is a hell of a gamble to take with your one and only life.

Is it time for you to create change around how your work life impacts your life? If so, what action will you take and when?

Related post: Why work-life balance is misleading.

Download Your Free Transformation in Action Self-Assessment Workbook.

  • elainerogers

    Quote – “The solution lies in each of us taking personal responsibility for creating something better.”
    I believe each one of us has a responsibility to ourselves and the greater community. Great thought provoking post Ali, thank you 🙂

  • Elaine, thanks for your kind comment about the post. Glad you liked it. Your comment raises an important point – the link and impact between self, work, family, community and social problems. These things need to be looked at as a whole yet each area is often looked at in isolation.

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  • I think that our society has turned many of us into automatons. As it's currently constructed, it needs us to mindlessly focus on work to the exclusion of all else because without that the whole economic system would have be be rethought. But sadly I think that's, to play on Ted Sturkel's words, a day by day kind of dying rather than a kind of living.

    Like you, however, I believe it's time for a revolution. Indeed, I think it has already started, and I'm proud and happy to be a member of a community of people that are creating the vanguard!

  • cvharquail

    Ali,
    Thanks for this post. I needed a reminder today about why I always need to pause before giving more at work or asking anyone else to. sometimes, it's hard to explain why 'passion' and 'engagement' and other nice concepts related to work should be approached with caution– and the reason is what you distill here…It's not that the point of life is to work, but that the point of work is to help us live life fully.

  • Christine, I think you have hit the nail on the head when you say “that the whole economic system would have to be rethought” – and thereby lies the problem because the current set up is self serving so there is no vested interest in really deep meaningful change. As with many examples of huge change it is going to have to come from the ground up. As you say, the revolution has already started and it is time for people to take theri lvies back and stop the tail wagging the dog.

  • Your point summarises the whole point perfectly – work should be serving us not the other way round. Thanks for droppnig by and sharing your views.

  • cvharquail

    Ali,
    Thanks for this post. I needed a reminder today about why I always need to pause before giving more at work or asking anyone else to. sometimes, it's hard to explain why 'passion' and 'engagement' and other nice concepts related to work should be approached with caution– and the reason is what you distill here…It's not that the point of life is to work, but that the point of work is to help us live life fully.

  • Christine, I think you have hit the nail on the head when you say “that the whole economic system would have to be rethought” – and thereby lies the problem because the current set up is self serving so there is no vested interest in really deep meaningful change. As with many examples of huge change it is going to have to come from the ground up. As you say, the revolution has already started and it is time for people to take theri lvies back and stop the tail wagging the dog.

  • Your point summarises the whole point perfectly – work should be serving us not the other way round. Thanks for droppnig by and sharing your views.