Career Advice

What Is “Work-Love Balance?” And Why You Need It NOW!

For the month of September, Glassdoor has been exploring the constant struggle for work-life balance. From companies that prioritize balance to strategies for assessing your boss’ work-life balance, we’ve covered it all. Or have we?

In a recent interview with psychotherapist and relationship expert Rhonda Richards-Smith, Glassdoor editors realized that work-life balance is missing one big thing: love. No, we’re not being mushy. We’re serious. In the quest to find balance between personal and professional, is there room for the good stuff—for loving those in our lives. Enter: work-love balance.

“Work-love balance is putting just as much thought, energy and time into finding and maintaining love as you do your work,” said Richards-Smith. “While it’s incredibly romantic to think that love just ‘happens’, the reality is that obtaining and maintaining love takes the continuous and conscious effort on both parties.”

[Related: Are You Being Paid Enough to Sacrifice Your Work-Life Balance?]

So for those of you checking Tinder once a day, that doesn’t count as work-love balance. And for you working parents who manage to make it home in time for one bedtime story and a rushed kiss goodnight, that’s not work-love balance either.

“While there is no such thing as complete work-love or work-life balance, achieving a better balance is possible,” adds Richards-Smith.

We hear many employees say things like, “I’ll focus on love when I make partner/earn six-figures/pay off student loans/get promoted.” However, the hustle is hard to break away from. Plus, studies have shown that people in thriving relationships not only live longer but make more money in their businesses and get promoted more frequently.

“Achieving a better balance between your work and personal life requires you to set yourself apart from the pack which can be an uncomfortable process, especially if it is discouraged by your employer, friends, and family,” says Richards-Smith.

[Related: 17 Companies with Great Work-Life Balance & Hiring Now!]

How do you achieve work-love balance?

Since you’re probably too slammed to read a long article, here are two quick suggestions from Richards-Smith for parents trying to juggle daycare and dinner, spreadsheets and success:

1. Do it together

“Children look to their parents and mirror their habits. While emphasizing the importance of good study habits early on is important, teaching children how and when to put their work aside is just as critical. When scheduling study time, schedule some personal time with your children. While this idea may seem impersonal, it demonstrates the importance of this activity to your children.”

2. Share your dreams with one another

“While much of our children’s academic curriculum is focused on mastering individual subjects, we often focus less on our children’s dreams beyond their future careers. Sharing your goals and dreams with your children will enhance their belief that they can do and be anything they want.”

TELL US: How have you nurtured your love life while climbing the corporate ladder? What tips and tricks have you employed? Share with us on Facebook @Glassdoor