Work/Life integration is something I’ve been speaking about throughout most of my career. Yes, we’ve shifted away from that dreaded word “balance” because I think most of us have come to realize that balance doesn’t really tell the whole story.
We have new lexicon now hoping that this will give us a more crystalized way of thinking about what’s possible. The word “integration” gives us hope because it reminds us that we are whole beings. We simply can’t compartmentalize our lives the way we once thought we could.
As a BabyBoomer, I know that many of our children paid a price for our success. The good news is those same children are now spearheading very innovative ways to make sure that their children don’t pay the same price for their success.
I can’t think of a better example of how this is being done than through the efforts of serial entrepreneur, Michael McCarthy.
If you haven’t listened to my most recent interview with Mike, please stop reading this and go do so right now.
Yes, he’s worth the effort.
Michael is one of those guys who enjoys multiple streams of income, yet his passion for success doesn’t interfere with his heart for family. He’s learned how to integrate the two on behalf of himself and others. One of the many hats he wears is that of CEO of GoBundance.com.
As I listened to the interview again this morning, I was struck by his wisdom in recognizing that the success of the family unit is vital to the success of us as leaders— even more vital to the healthy sustainability of our larger society.
Initially, GoBundance was a mastermind group for successful men who simply needed to get away with the guys for a few days of rest and recreation. It wasn’t too long before Michael realized that the getaways were contributing to the very problem he was trying to solve—that of helping leaders integrate work and life.
Michael went on to say that the big ah-ha came for him one day when he returned from yet another transformational experience.
“I’d come home and vomit all that I’d learned and how it was going to change our life, but then I realized that my wife and children hadn’t shared in that experience. They were left home doing regular life,” he explained.
They essentially didn’t know what Michael was talking about.
After deep reflection, Michael realized that he and his colleagues were growing, yes, but they were growing into places that were actually separating them from their families even more. It wasn’t just the physical weekend of being away from home that separated them, it was the actual learning going on in those spaces that caused the divide.
So, Michael being Michael decided to do something about it.
Both groups have a finely tuned set of values, and it is the family values coupled with family-focused weekend events that have helped Michael and his colleagues truly experience the benefits of authentic work/life integration.
The latest addition to this innovative approach to work/life integration is GoBundanceWomen.com.
Here’s what’s most important about the work Michael and his colleagues are doing. All of these efforts are grounded in Michael’s belief that the family unit is the solution to all of our social, political, educational, and global issues.
I totally agree because the family system is our first encounter with systems, and if we don’t have a deep sense of belonging within that system—and, yes, I know you’re probably tired of hearing me say this—then we will be fragmented in how we interface and attempt to belong in every other system we encounter to include work and our relationships.
If you want to learn more about what Michael and his team are doing to reignite the family unit, you can go to GoBundance.com.
True work/life integration, then, stems from our ability to live out our vision and values in every area of our lives. Michael McCarthy is proving that it can be done, and he’s challenging us to do the same for the sake of our families, our businesses, and our world.
Makes my heart sing!