Work/Life Balance

One of the questions I get asked the absolute most is how I balance everything. I find this annoying… not in the actual question itself, but more so in the fact that there is always ten (and a half) different opinions on work/life balance.
It’s integration! You can have it all! There’s no such thing as balance!

See, it’s annoying! There’s no right answer, but the opinions are strong and loud.
But while I don’t agree with the answers, I think the question itself is flawed. Asking how you find balance between work and life implies that work and life are separate. But I don’t think that’s the case… not entirely that is.

Work is a part of life. But your life is not your work.
I have, admittedly struggled with this in the past. Even in school, I struggled to find “balance” between crew, my social life, and classes. There was give and take, yes, but it wasn’t the right approach. And then absolutely, I had challenges with work and life and that constant struggle for the most part of the first year of working.
It wasn’t until this summer that I ended up sort of figuring it out. I say “sort of” because it’s not 100%. It’s really just being closer to understanding. As long as you’re working on it and aware of your choices and your feelings, that’s the hardest and most important part! It’s okay to feel a little off from time to time… I really have to work at it, but for the most part I’ve been better.
This summer I realized that my life had a lot more components than simply my work (my blog, my job, my projects). And I realized that my work was not my life. Having a healthy life includes making sure that my work elements are going well. But also understanding that work isn’t everything. 
It’s been a slow process this summer, but this month has had lots of steps in the right direction. I’ve taken entire days off. I’ve gone to late night, four hour dinners when normally I would have gone back home to work. Weekends are actually relaxing and rejuvenating and filled with fun. I’ve said no to things. I’ve turned away from projects. I’ve stepped down when necessary and up when I wanted to.
I’ve leaned in and opted out.
What I’ve found is that the more I’m aware of this, the more I enjoy everything. I enjoy my friends more and time alone more. But I also enjoy my work more. It doesn’t seem like a burden, but a choice and one that I love doing. I have been reminded of what it means to be passionate about something. Whether that’s a personal relationship or a project for your job.
So it’s not really about having a life and having work. It’s about figuring out how work fits into your life and how your life is bigger than your work.
Have you struggled with this notion of “balance”?

Say Hello

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



I would definitely say balance is a challenge for me. Even if it is a balance between working and sleeping! Sometimes it is so hard to stop working (especially if you are on a roll!) to go to sleep.
Great post!


I'm STILL trying to find the balance. It's hard when sometimes it seems like putting work first is the better option, but at the same time…it's also just as difficult to realize that you will never get back time that is lost, which makes you NOT want to work.

Thank you for the post. I definitely needed to read this (as I'm struggling to finish a million of things on my to-do list)… 🙂


This is a really great post. I think most people struggle with this. Almost everybody I know is. My boyfriend loves his job, but it can obviously be very time consuming, so he's trying to figure out how to achieve a balance between both and I'm trying to figure out how to balance pleasure and work every day, so that it's filled with a bit of both etc. I found this post really helpful, inspiring, if anything, just to be a bit more aware of it and mindful. I think it's especially important after the summer holidays, when people start working full force and then crash after a while.

Renate from


You have such a way with words! This post could not have come at a better point because just yesterday, I wastrying to figure out how to "balance" my life. I agree with you that
"Work is a part of your life." I am trying to figue out how to integrate, work, relaxing, crafts, projects, family, friends etc. This has been a long struggle for me. Thanks for an insight look on how you do it. Thanks!

The Brown Eyed Sunshine

I found tis post very inspiring. I feel like I am always in a struggle finding a "balance" between school/work/life and you helped me realize that it's a slow process, not something you can just learn overnight. Thank You<3


I agree there is no right or correct way! I'm in my second year of Law School juggling school, work and 'life'. Each week is a bit different and at times I just have to go with it, but I absolutely love all the different aspects of what I have going on!


Vett Vandiver

favorite line: I've leaned in and opted out.

that's what I've learned too since graduating and it's made all of the difference – there is a happy medium and it really is happy 🙂

Anna Boyd

Really enjoyed this post Carly. I've been a huge fan of your blog for a while now, and found this really helpful. I just graduated in May and am starting to figure out this "work/life balance" and how to enjoy both! Thank you for your insight, have a great week!


I love your blog Carly and continually find myself on it during class, or even at work! This blog post could not come at a better time for me. I am trying to balance my summer job (I work at a golf course in the proshop and the lounge) which will be ending soon, my nannying job, and my full-time education, while at the same time trying to find time to sleep and spend time with my boyfriend. Well, and everything else on top of this.
I love your advice and I hope to soon find my balance.


This is the best description I've heard of balance in a long time. I'm about to graduate law school, and all my friends work 16 hour days in their firm's office and it just seems so unhealthy that their job is their entire life. I really hope that next year I can be more like you. Work is important, yes, but I value so many more things in my life that I don't want to compromise.

Julia D.

I think you summed it up nicely with this: "So it's not really about having a life and having work. It's about figuring out how work fits into your life and how your life is bigger than your work." I think that is something everyone involved in the debate/discussion on work/life balance can agree on.