I read this great post from Vidya and started commenting on the post. That is when I realized my comment became as big as the post itself. So read the following after you read the original post at http://vidyab.blogspot.com/2009/07/balanced-life-is-myth.html (you wont understand my post, if you dont :-) ) Let me know what you think.
This is great introspection.
I think work-life balance is created by the working class of people who’d like to have time-away-from-work for other things. I realize work-life balance and balanced life are not quite the same, but at the same time, I have not seen any achiever (whether it is swimming or chess or music or magic or circus or anything) become an achiever without doing the same thing over and over, day after day, year after year and forever.
1) Is there a day when they can afford to stop doing it? I dont know…my guess is there is probably not….Zakir Hussain practises even today for 4 hrs/day and starts his day at 3:30am and still calls himself a “student”
2) Do achievers not have a thing as balanced-life? I believe a lot of this has to do with perspective. Its about having a choice. When you’ve practised for several years and become an accomplished person on whatever it is you do, you then have a choice in life. Choice of material pleasures as well as other things. While I may be sounding a little too strong, I believe the mediocre person will have accomplished very little and life would give them the options, they wont get to choose.
Take schooling for example. You can follow an aggressive system and accomplish more OR settle down for a mellowed school system, providing rather organic development of our skills. But at the end, you’d have taken longer, with even chances of whether you will become accomplished or not.
3) Lastly, are parents justified in showing their children the one path THEY think might work for their children? Quite frankly, I haven’t found an answer in myself for this question. Consider this: you did not know if the way your parents showed you was your best until much later. That leaves you as a parent with a choice to make (a) show them what you think is appropriate (b) let your children figure out what they want. I know of +ves and -ves of both, I think it comes down to something that we hold very close to ourselves.
1) All my mentions of “you” was just bcoz I was comfy with direct speech
2) This entire comment assumes the parent/child can afford the kind of training and practice. Financially, that is.