On a recent business trip I met an ex-consultant with more than 10 years of work experience in that field. By that time he was an entrepreneur already, employing a number of people himself. He had a family – a wife and a little girl.
What clearly distinguished him from the people I met for a longer while, was the passion in his eyes. A passion for his work. He manifested conviction and confidence. He seemed naturally optymistic – a smile never left his face. It was interesting to see how much others clinged to him. To them he was a source of energy.
When late night came and everyone else was already fast asleep, one could see him working on a notebook beside the bar or outside in the garden.
One day, I asked him about his family and work-life balance. I knew that his business required him to leave home for several weeks each month or so. He confirmed it wasn’t easy, but then he made a promise to himself to spend at least a week with his family after each period of separation. Still, even during those family days he challenged himself to work for at least an hour. Every day. According to him, transitions were much easier that way.
Returning to work after a leave is often a difficult task. To some, vacation is perhaps even more difficult to bare. There is something about our ability to switch from one to the other. Contrary to the obvious – mixing work and private life slightly more might be the solution.