Once upon a time, there were two different things called “work” and “life,” and the two were separated by distance and time. You went to work or you went home. You started work at a specific time, and you ended at a later, but just as specific time.
Perhaps that time was mythical — didn’t people think about work when they were away from it? — but with new tools, especially smartphones, the lines have blurred. Work can be in you pocket. It could be the first thing — or the last thing — you do each day, while still in bed at home.
At least, that’s true for me, with an iPhone and iPad that I can carry with me pretty much everywhere, and a laptop at home, as well as a computer at work.
Recently, I was in a hotel room in Rome, Italy, on vacation, but checking my email so I wouldn’t be overwhelmed when I returned, and I was approving blog comments on this blog. My work followed me across the Atlantic. So I either have a problem, or I’m a dedicated worker.
Next week, I’ll be panelist at a talk at The College of Saint Rose called “Tethered 24/7: Staying Human with Today’s Technology.” You can attend the event for free. It’s at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 21, 2012, at The College of Saint Rose, Touhey Forum, Lally Building, 1009 Madison Ave., Albany. You just need to register online.
Beforehand, though, I want to know your stories about today’s technology. Was there a single event when you realized you were too tethered? And what have you done about it to try to achieve a better balance between work and life?