Image for Work-life balance
Work-life balance

Related Terms

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Background

  • Work-life balance is a phrase used to describe an individual's feelings of satisfaction with the participation in job-related activities and his or her personal life. This state is achieved when an individual feels the amount of time spent making money to provide for one's household and advancing career goals is adequately balanced with the amount of time spent in independent and personal pursuits, such as friendships, family, spirituality, hobbies, and leisure activities.
  • Failure to maintain work-life balance may result in significant emotional distress and reduction of productivity. In many cases, spending more time at work may actually lead to a decrease in productivity. Some individuals feel that their workplace creates too many pressures to maintain a work/life balance, and they may feel a reduction in their feelings of satisfaction and enjoyment of life. Some individuals feel as if there is not enough time for other aspects of life. In general, individuals who work more than 60 hours per week are colloquially called workaholics.
  • The phrase "workaholic" became popular in 1971 when Wayne Oates published the book, "Confessions of a Workaholic." The phrase "workaholic" is not a clinical term, but it is generally used to describe individuals who neglect their personal lives in favor of work- and career-related pursuits. The phrase "work-life balance" became popular as a managerial concept when employers realized that their workers demonstrated increased productivity, decreased turnover, and dedication to the company when the concept was observed and respected.
  • As people born between 1960 and 1980 (collectively known as Generation X) entered the workplace, managerial strategies have shifted towards encouraging work/life balance in order to retain highly skilled employees who, as a group, regard workaholism less positively than their predecessors. Multiple studies have found that Americans work significantly more hours than their counterparts in other industrialized nations. In order to retain valuable employees, attract new employees, maximize productivity, improve morale, and decrease career burnout most contemporary mainstream managerial practices emphasize the importance of work/life balance.
  • Further content available for subscribers only.

Technique

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Theory/Evidence

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Safety

  • Content available for subscribers only.

Author Information

  • Content available for subscribers only.

References

Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.

  • Content available for subscribers only.
The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.