Why I don’t want balance

I’ve been striving for balance my entire life. That perfect work-life equilibrium that everyone is struggling to achieve? I don’t think I want it anymore…

min read

Work-life balance who?

I read a post by one of my favourite black creatives, Eso Tolson, today and it really made me stop and think.

“Less balance. More harmony.”


And I agree with him. I don’t want balance either.

I’ve been striving for balance my entire life. And not at one point in 30+ years did I ever feel like I found that illusive state of being. That magical Libran scale — solver of all life’s issues — perfectly weighted with my goals, my dreams, my family, my career, my social life, my hobbies, my health, my finances, my body, my relationships, my knowledge, my house, my fun…

That perfect work-life balance that everyone talks about is a perfect combination that everyone struggles to achieve. Like a simultaneous equation, it’s precise. And thus lies the problem. It’s exact. That scale is perfectly still. It can only be right or wrong. It’s unmoving, and uninteresting, and is a flatline of a life. And. I. Don’t. Want. It.

I don’t want balance.

I want to tip the scales SO HARD in favour of joy, in favour of life. I want a rollercoaster, a merry-go-round. I want dessert, just dessert, maybe 3 courses of dessert! I want as many highs as I can. High planes, and high smiles, and high dreams. I want the lows too. Because I don’t want to be numb. I want to feel everything, and allow myself to do so.

I want my work-life balance to not. I want work to be very much on the light-side. I want to release all the weights of the hustle, and corporate conditioning, and glass ceilings, and not taking sick days for fear of being fired…

But life? I want that to be on the heavy side. Jam-packed with play, and adventures, and art, and loving out loud. I want to be so full that it spills out when I walk and other people get to take a little extra bit with them. I want it so heavy that it doesn’t matter what might be added on the other side of the scale. They will always be tipped in my favour.

The phrase “work-life balance” needs binning — that perfect scale doesn’t exist. Perfection doesn’t exist. Besides, who wants to balance everything all at once anyway?