Topics: Employment, Working time, Job satisfaction Pages: 10 (3139 words) Published: December 19, 2012
The work-leisure dichotomy was invented in the mid 1800s.Paul Krassner remarked that anthropologists use a definition of happiness that is to have as little separation as possible "between your work and your play."The expression "Work–life balance" was first used in the United Kingdom in the late 1970s to describe the balance between an individual's work and personal life. In the United States, this phrase was first used in 1986. Most recently, there has been a shift in the workplace as a result of advances in technology. As Bowswell and Olson-Buchanan stated, "increasingly sophisticated and affordable technologies have made it more feasible for employees to keep contact with work." Employees have many methods, such as emails, computers and cell phones, which enable them to accomplish their work beyond the physical boundaries of their office. Employees may respond to an email or a voice mail after-hours or during the weekend, typically while not officially "on the job." Researchers have found that employees who consider their work roles to be an important component of their identities will be more likely to apply these communication technologies to work while in their non-work domain .Some theorists suggest that this blurred boundary of work and life is a result of technological control. Technological control "emerges from the physical technology of an organization". In other words, companies use email and distribute smart phones to enable and encourage their employees to stay connected to the business even when they are not in the real office. This type of control, as Barker argues, replaces the more direct, authoritarian control, or simple control, such as managers and bosses. As a result, communication technologies in the temporal and structural aspects of work have changed, defining a "new workplace" in which employees are more connected to the jobs beyond the boundaries of the traditional workday and workplace.[8] The more this boundary is blurred, the higher work-to-life conflict is self-reported by employees. Many authors believe that parents being affected by work-life conflict will either reduce the number of hour’s one works where other authors suggest that a parent may run away from family life or work more hours at a workplace. This implies that each individual views work-life conflict differently.

Work–life balance is a concept including proper prioritizing between "work" (career and ambition) and "lifestyle" (Health, pleasure, leisure, family and spiritual development/meditation). Related, though broader, terms include "lifestyle calm balance" and "life style choices". There is no agreed definition of work-life balance but it does appear that the ‘right’ balance for one person may differ from the next. Balance is achieved in different ways for different people and has a different purpose for people. Some people do it to balance their caring responsibilities for children with work, while others want more time to themselves, engaging in leisure activities. Work-life balance, in its broadest sense, is defined as a satisfactory level of involvement or ‘fit’ between the multiple roles in a person’s life (Hudson, 2005). People’s perception of work-life balance is very subjective, as reflected by various descriptions of work-life balance by employees: “A good balance is a four-day workweek. This allows me to get all the ’stuff’ (groceries, laundry, cleaning) done in one day and still have two to do what I want.” “If the dream job has stress within in tolerable / manageable limits, then I will have achieved a Work - Life balance.” “For me, a good work-life balance means something simple: to work to support my life, and not the other way around. I don’t want to use my life to support my work, I want to...
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