A Norwegian idiom, with a diabolically didactic flavour, delineates the microcosm of the eternal trade-off between work and leisure – ‘Man kan ikke få både i pose og sekk.’ It implies that one can’t have the best of both worlds, that the cost of working is the satisfaction of a fulfilling family life. Well, for me, striking a balance between the supposedly desirable yet mutually exclusive alternatives has, is, and will always be a priority.
Establishing a company, becoming a husband, stepping into parenthood – while hitting the milestone of 30 years of age has been an adventure and a pleasure. Living in Norway while remotely managing our brainchild, Kilowott headquartered in Goa, I find solace in knowing that a supportive family is stationed in both these places. A household in Norway, and a work family in Goa.
I have my own set of domestic duties to discharge; and this, in many ways, has influenced how Kilowott addresses the work-life balance needs of employees. In this regard, my wife Elise and I have adopted a rather proactive approach towards parenting. Aged between 1 and 7 years, our children Zion, Eleah, Daniel, and Benjamin, passing through several developmental and behavioural benchmarks, are quite impressionable. Hence, regulating my own stress, frustrations, and pressures becomes crucial at such a growth stage. Additionally, sharing responsibilities with my wife, be it feeding the children or completing chores around the house, being a hands-on family man has become an irreparable part of my stride. The pandemic had me working from home, often overlapping the boundaries of work and domestic life. Currently, I’ve been working from a space outside. So, I ensure not to engage in work-related activities when I am at home.
Dealing with work pressures and familial obligations would be arduous without devoting a little time to myself. Wellness and self-care approaches have helped a great deal in negotiating with the various stressors. Reading books and rejuvenating my knowledge is one such strategy. A healthy diet plan and adequate workout have played a major role in keeping me mentally and physically fit. A healthy mind builds a healthy life, and it’s this equation that has enabled me to straddle the best of both worlds.