Work Life Integration Strikes again!

Do you believe in work life balance?

Last month on our virtual trip to Ireland, I shared how I don’t believe in work life balance. Work life integration felt like a more achievable way to think about it. When a business trip threatened to thwart our 20th anniversary plans, I turned it into a mini moon by bringing the husband along to Dublin.  

Work Life Integration To The Rescue

In 2019, I had a meeting in Paris that coincided with the mid winter recess for our girls. Since we had already been to Paris, we decided to go to London which was convenient, since Paris was only a short plane ride away. Yes, it was not so convenient for me to get up at the crack of dawn to catch the red-eye, something I have not done in many years. Still, this felt like a small sacrifice. Our plan was to divide and conquer! While I was away on business for a day, the husband planned an awesome day of adventure with the kids. Yes, work life integration strikes again! They explored the museum and even went on a Muggles tour. Our Harry Potter fans would recognize two of the pictures below from a scene in the movie!

How This Helps With Mom Guilt

When I got back that night, the kids were already in bed, exhausted from the day of fun. What I loved most about the work life integration magic here is that I did not feel that pang of mom guilt and neither did I feel like I missed out. There was comfort in the knowledge that I would be spending the rest of the week with my girls. Our girls work really hard during the school year and they cherish our holidays together as much as we do. When I am not able to spend time with them during these precious school breaks, it truly breaks my heart and theirs. We were all very happy that we managed to ensure that my work did not interfere with plans to spend quality time together.

A Lesson For The Kids

A lesson that I hope my kids also take away is that everything is “figureoutable”. This word, as I recently discovered, is a favorite of Marie Forleo, a NY times best seller described by Oprah as “the thought leader of future generations”. Don’t you love it when others describe so succinctly something you would otherwise struggle to express?! Life throws us curveballs. Some big ones and some small ones like the one I shared today. Things don’t always go the way we planned. What we can choose to do is to get creative and focus on how to turn it into something to smile about. At the very least, I hope they recognize that these forks in the road are little gifts; learning opportunities that make us a stronger, better version of our future ourselves.

XoXo – Mirfie

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