Leaning In or Leaning Out

February 27, 2014 at 7:56 PM

Lately I have had multiple reasons to think about the important things in life such as success, happiness, love and the meaning of life. Not the least of these reasons has been illness and the need to redirect my energies inward for the first time in a very long time. Sadly, I found out that I HAD NO TIME to think about the important things in life and redirect my energies because ... I was too busy! The irony! Busy with work, kids, chores and so on. Busy learning about technologies that are supposed to make our life better. Busy explaining to others how mobile communications, unified communications, cloud communications, and other advanced technologies enable remote working and better work-life balance and hence a greater quality of life. And then I wondered--but why is it not happening for me?

Today, in advance of my birthday tomorrow, a dear friend of mine sent me this article:

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/02/21/recline_why_leaning_in_is_killing_us_sheryl_sandberg


I'd like to share it with you and hopefully hear your thoughts on this matter.

Tags: modern women, remote working, working mothers

Re: Leaning In or Leaning Out

February 27, 2014 at 8:40 PM
When I read this last week, it struck such a chord. While I admire and respect Sheryl Sandberg and her efforts to make it easier for women to succeed at work, we as a society need to remember that not everyone wants to be a CEO, or entrepreneur, or even someone who lives to work; some people really do work to live. I feel extremely blessed that, as an analyst at Frost & Sullivan, I get to work from home in Colorado and enjoy all the flexibility that brings--especially when it comes to juggling work and kids and home. But I can't help but wonder about the fact that, while technology of all kinds continues to make us more productive, it has not actually lessened our workload--it really just let's us work more. (I say, as I write this from my home office at 8:30pm.) As a woman, I find this falls on my especially hard, but I imagine that as trends around parenting and men continue to show them equally involved in childcare and house work, it will become a gender-neutral issue--which is what we need, I imagine, if we are ever to make a change.

As an aside, I studied anthropology in college, and I'll never forget a video we saw in class one day, of several tribesmen who were themselves shown a video of what is was like to live in 20th-century America. They could NOT believe how much time people spent working. I mean, they just did not get it. (They also laughed hysterically at the idea that anyone would voluntarily run for no reason, on a treadmill, at a gym.) Food for thought.