Is the separation of home and work a thing of the past?
March 17, 2015

It's been said that in order to have a successful career, one must leave the home life at home. Conversely, to fully enjoy the benefits of a personal life, you should keep work at the office. Workaholics have always had trouble with that total separation, but it seems that there's less of a desire to have such a strict line in place. Now you can check business emails at any time of day and keep in contact with family or loved ones during workday hours.

How much of one aspect of your life figure into the other? Is it time to blur the line between the office and the home entirely?

Separate but equal
There are benefits to keeping the two spheres of life separate from one another. Being at work has a certain mood to it. There are specific stressors and attitudes that may be fine for the office but are entirely toxic when brought into the personal life. In an interview with Fortune, Director of Human Dynamics and Work at Herman Miller and author of a work/life balance book, Tracy Bower asserted that some people need "totally separate containers" in their lives, one for work and one for pleasure. Exactly how separate those "containers" are is an entirely subjective issue and should only matter to the employee. 

The source continued to note how people who choose to have two distinct frames of mind instead of an integrated work and life style may actually get more done at the office. Arranging your life to suit your needs, while still committing to the office and having a personal life is healthy and can lead to more success in both spheres. 

Blurred lines
While the "separate but equal" style may work for some people and is necessary for them to function properly, others thrive in a world where there isn't one persona for home and one for the office. Flexible schedules are becoming more commonplace in today's business market and there's no reason why individuals shouldn't take advantage of them if they are effective. In a separate Fortune article, it was noted that 75 percent of women who participated in a time diary study logged personal events during business hours, and 77 percent of them did work outside of the 9-to-5. 

This integration of personal and professional seems to be successful for many people. As long as the work gets done and employees feel they can do their jobs competently, perhaps the perfect balance between the professional and home life is no longer relevant. Of course, no two people are the same and understanding what method works best for you is the most important part of that balance. 

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