### 5 Conditional Probabilities of Work Life Balance

You must have studied conditional probability in 11th-grade mathematics. And good for you if you didn’t ☺️ Achieving work-life balance is based on many conditions and probabilities.

Five of them are enlisted below. If you try to fulfill any many of these five, there is a probability that you might achieve this enigma called work-life balance.

Dictionary defines enigma as a puzzling or inexplicable occurrence or situation. Work life balance is an enigma because everyone wants it in their lives, but there is no formula. One could only try, make a couple of detours and lose their way before they hit the jackpot.

As the famous poet Nida Fazli wrote:

Kabhi Kisi ko mukammal jahan nahi milta, ​
kahin zameen toh kahin asmaan nahi milta

The ethic of bigger, better & faster has prompted us to expend far more energy than what we adequately can renew. The demands just relentlessly keep on rising. And how do most people react: TV, Alcohol, Smoking, Sleeping pills etc. If you see closely such stuff does not renew us out; it rather numbs us out. These habits: they keep asking for more until you have no more left. They are nothing but our misguided efforts to calm & comfort ourselves.

As a part of my travels across nations and geographies in India (Mumbai-Delhi-Kolkata-Bengaluru and the many cities in between) and meetings with so many people of variegated age groups for my Motivational Events and workshops, here’s what I have gathered about probable ways of improving work-life balance:

1. Stopping misguided efforts to calm & comfort ourselves​: Alcohol & smoke won’t work; if work life balance (and health) is what you are aiming at.

These are temporary solutions to not so temporary problems. And definitely not the best way to release your pent up frustrations and emotions. Because, all it does is, increase your tolerance level for substance abuse and sets you back a little every day. Any sort of addiction never works because when the effect of the substance is over, you are back to square one.

Your problems aren’t solved. Newer problems are there. And you are not doing anything to solve them. Pretty soon, it won’t leave anything for you to balance. ​

2. Building the solar system of discipline​: ​I have learned this the hard way, over 15 years of falling and getting up. And I have loved sharing it with my audiences in my stress management program “CalmSutra” – Don’t try to fix discipline around your life. It never works. ​

​Instead, make discipline the Sun of your solar system. And plan your life around it. If there has to be a morning run, walk up and down the stairs if you have to but get that damn exercise done, if there is no park to run around. If you decide not to bring your work home on weekends, work your ass off to finish it off during the weekdays, no matter how sexy the

Friday night party sounds. If you meditate, make sure to fix a time and do it even if hell breaks loose. That’s when and how it will happen; not anything less. From that busy 9-8 schedule (or no fixed schedule) of yours, if you don’t create time for discipline – work life balance to Tum-Se-Naa Ho Payega!​​

3. Create a portfolio of goals​: My experience of interacting with the best & worst of the industries and the brightest and not-so-bright minds of the country has taught me that people fail because of three reasons –

1) no goals in life, 2) too many goals in life and 3) wrong goals in life. I meet a lot of people with worried foreheads and sweaty palms; their common problem is their belief that they have never ending work.​

The balance in ‘work-life balance’ won’t ever come to you if you don’t figure out those 5 most important to-dos of life. The rest are just extra luggage that women carry with them for a 2-day trip ☺️

Create a portfolio of those 5-6 goals in life that you want to invest your valuable time and energy into. Spirituality, family, work, fitness, hobby – a reasonably well thought of portfolio,

if you ask me. Make an effort to spend time with family. They are the only ones who will stay stuck with you through all the crests and troughs of life. Take vacations, find stuff to do together and invest in memories. If that’s not work life balance, what is? Using your work to create a better life with those for whom you work.​

​If you try to do everything, you will end up doing nothing. Neither will you remain a fully functionally productive professional, nor a highly loved person in the family. Choose your battles. And choose to be a warrior instead of a worrier.

4. Cutting down on online time: If you are choosing a life of enslavement to your blue screens, you are also choosing to kiss your work life balance goodbye. Studies have revealed that an addiction to the internet can reduce your productive time by more than 40%. It is not that you have less time on your clock. It’s just that you have more unnecessary things to do! ​

It is important to remain connected, sure. But if you enjoy your virtual time more than your real time, then you are definitely doing something wrong with your life. Don’t be dumber just because your phone is becoming smarter.​

5. De-obsession of sex: Yes, even in their 30s and 40s, people obsess about it. Even in Parliaments ☺️ you may believe it is a cute little thing you enjoy, to obsess over the opposite sex or the same sex, whoever you choose to obsess over. But this obsession, much like drug addiction, will soon get out of control. Because it will fill your mind with limitless desire and you will want to make use of every opportunity you get. How else do you think these sexual harassment cases have become the elephants in the corporate boardrooms that people love to discuss so much? ​

The whirlwind excitement of friendly flirting over the cooler and at the coffee table soon turns into a downhill road.More often than not, people don’t realize how quickly they fall.

When there remains no life left in work, and no work left in life (but to obsess) – where does the question of work-life balance arise?

But surprisingly, combating this is not that difficult. Eating right, sleeping right (i.e sleeping at night and waking up early morning when even Emraan Hashmi doesn’t feel very sexed up), adding just 30 mins of exercise every day – could add wonders to your obsession fighting mission. Fighting the temptations could be difficult. But with the disciplined practice of the above three can miraculously improve your situation because this routine takes care of all the extra pent up energies that you are probably wasting on sexy but useless conversations with all and sundry. ​

Work-life balance remains an enigma, no matter how many hundreds of articles you find on the internet about it. Because everyone’s answer is different. It takes hits and misses to finally figure out what will balance your work lifeboat. Don’t be afraid of the misses, for somewhere you will find the hits too.