It quickly spreads and seeps in to fill spaces in our personal lives. But there are ways to stop the flow.
I was an hour into my surf session when I looked at my watch. I had 15 minutes to catch a wave in, find my phone buried in a Ziploc bag on the beach and dial into a conference call to my office in New York City. As I was getting out of the warm Pacific to squat on the hot sand for a meeting, a koan-like question bubbled up: Is this proof of work-life balance or of workaholism? Had I found a way to do what I love most while keeping my professional obligations, or had work completely invaded the sanctity of my hard-won time in the waves?
My life as a subpar surfer has brought me many gifts. Sometimes that gift comes in the form of a wave. More often, it’s in the freedom from having to surf well or meet any expectations or goals. The very opposite of our work lives.