Tracy Petrucci: Work-Love Balance

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Work-Love Balance

Is there such a thing as work-life balance? And with that said, is there such a thing as work-LOVE balance? I'm slightly tired of all the messages saying you HAVE to love your work, since it's difficult to fathom everyone loving what they do.

"Love what you do and you'll never work a day in your life"

That's one of those quotes I'm talking about. I am lucky I love what I do, but it comes with long hours, stress, exhaustion, and sometimes utter confusion at how I could be so happy with something so demanding.

Then at other times I'm like, "Weeee I loooooooove my job. I'm the luckiest girl in the whole wide world," and I ride off on my unicorn into the sunset.

It's a dichotomy. I'm guessing it's like this...realize you have a skill or passion. Begin working at skill or passion. Have OTHER people realize your skill or passion and get crazy and insanely busy and feel grateful but tired. Figure out how to "work smarter not harder" and then, maybe finally, you can sit back, relax, and enjoy the show?

I'm not sure. I just felt like expressing my love for my work, my gratefulness for my love for my work, and my understanding that not everyone can/should/will love their work and that's ok too.

Do we HAVE to self identify with our job, or can we exist as two separate things? Some studies show certain people are happiest at the mindless work because nobody bothers them and lets them be and they can just "clock out" and move on with their day. Their job does not define them.

"In most organizations, low performers are pretty much left alone. They are happy as clams because no one notices or bothers them. They can just sit there quietly and won’t be discovered as long as no one does anything to alter the terrain." - Leadership IQ

Other studies show those happiest with their work are those who are doing the most fulfilling jobs money just can't buy. Think helping the homeless or working at inner-city schools.

At the end of the day we are all so different. Sometimes I dream of moving to some ranch, having another baby or two, and slowing down a little. Sometimes I get jealous that my husband comes home from work and literally doesn't think about it again until he goes back the next night. Sometimes I envy others who I perceive to be doing even more than I am, and I wonder if I need to get to that level... or maybe I am ok where I'm at?

Being part of a generation where the message you have to do what you love is literally being shoved down our throats, I see my peers and clients struggle with the conundrum. I struggle with it too. I feel like maybe I don't have a right to have an opinion on this since I am "the lucky one" who loves what I do and actually has made a living doing it. But it has come with so many sacrifices too. It has NOT been easy and maybe that will always remain a mystery to me.

This mysterious place of work-love balance?

PS This post was brought on by my featured Pinterest board for February. As I was pinning to this board (I wanted to theme on something slightly LOVE related this month of course) I realized I had trouble with it since I was so conflicted on the topic. Then, I couldn't fit everything I wanted to say in the newsletter section, so I just took it over to the blog and got my thoughts out of my head. Follow the board, I'll be evolving it and adding things that inspire me, people who changed the world, big or small. I have many more thoughts on this. I could have written pages. Alas it's the night before my newsletter goes out and I couldn't help but write this and squeeze it in. But sometimes you have to say, enough is enough!


  1. I also am one of the "lucky ones" but their are times when I also don't feel like it. The buck always stops with you, it's always your responsibility. I often know that I would probably make more money working for a company especially with the cost of medical insurance these days. Their are good days, their are bad days, their are clients I never want to see again. But all in all I would rather feel like I am the director of my own life and that I call the least I think I do to some extent. Their is great satisfaction in that to look back and see what you have created. Seeing that I chose not to have children, creating something was important to me. I think it just boils down to "what do you want" and "what would make you feel better". If working for someone else feels right, then do it, and to heck with what everybody is saying. When I started out everybody was saying "get a corporate job", but that didn't feel right to me, so I didn't.

  2. Ah so nice to have a real comment here! Thank you for the great insight Paloma... I definitely DO NOT want to be doing anything other than what I'm doing! I feel very lucky, even with all of the hardships that can come along with being a business owner. Can't wait to hear how things are going with your new creations! You're quite the inspiration.