Work-Life Balance


Extract from Issue#38 of Teaching Tuesdays@CSU

All issues of Teaching Tuesdays can be accessed through the folder at this link

Work-Life Balance

Work-Life Balance: Managing Your Koyaanisqatsi

By Richard L. Riccardi, ScD

Source: Academic Leader – Institutional Culture

This article, directed at academic leadership, is applicable to all across the academic spectrum. As we approach a traditional time of a well-earned break in the academic calendar, we are challenged to get the balance right and make time for our personal replenishment. This includes not checking emails!

The term ‘koyaanisqatsi’ is a Hopi word defined as “life out of balance”. Read the article for further explanation of this concept.

The article goes on to suggest that in getting this balance wrong we risk decreasing overall productivity and potentially diminishing the quality of our work. So, what contributes to this imbalance? Email and 24-hour connectivity are two of the big ones.

Do you check and/or respond to your email when you are on leave or during out-of-work hours?

Do you send emails to colleagues when you know they are on leave?

The challenge – protect your personal time this break.

To meet this challenge, here are suggestions you can easily adopt. They include:

  • Manage and prioritise your time, making sure to include family time, social time, and alone time.
  • Define what is a real work emergency and develop alternative communication methods for those situations when you are on leave.
  • Manage expectations for communication with work colleagues. Don’t make 24-hour availability the “norm”.
  • Get more sleep.
  • Disconnect from technology at certain times – and really mean it!

In the end “YOU are the manager of YOUR koyaanisqatsi”.


Post script: Think about how your work-life balance is reflected in the ethos of CSU:

Yindyamarra Winhanganha

– the wisdom of respectfully knowing how to live well in a world worth living in.