Mixing Personal and Professional

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told not to mix personal with professional. But that is exactly what we ask our volunteers and board members to do all of the time. How many of your top supporters ask their co-workers and business associates to partner with you?

Sometimes we get too caught up in segmenting and compartmentalizing our lives. If we have some good personal connections that make sense to help something you are doing take advantage of them. It is healthy for us to talk with each other about what is really happening in our lives personally and professionally, that’s is often what builds trust the very best.

Keep in mind that a healthy work and life balance is still vital. Just because you have friends that you work with doesn’t mean you should consistently overwork. Also, make sure that you continue to treat everyone with the same professional courtesy you always have used. You have to understand your personal and professional line for yourself and often you will know if you’ve crossed it.

Work is what you do more than anything else in your day so it’s important to find ways to be yourself while you’re on the job. What is your personal and professional line? How do you keep these areas of your life in check?

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2 Responses to Mixing Personal and Professional

  1. Leanne says:

    I really like this idea, Jason, and I’m glad you created this post.

    For me, especially in my work in the non-profit world, what I’ve found is that the charities I’ve chosen to align myself with aren’t to be segmented at all. Meaning, everything I do is personal, whether I get paid for it or not.

    The way I’m wired and the way I approach things may not work for everyone but I simply cannot work or promote something I don’t believe in. This affects the way I parent, the way I choose to earn a living, the way I live my faith and the way I interact with the world and my surrounding community.

    What this looks like is that I work in such a way that allows me to parent the way I choose to. I worship in a way that involves more than a bricks and mortar building on Sundays. I spend my free time pursuing causes that are dear to my heart and ones I feel especially connected with in ways that fold so naturally into my “leisure” time, that there is really no distinction between where work, recreation and service meet.

    Again, this may not be for everyone, but I have learned that it’s crucial to my own happiness and therefore, I’m more than satisfied to embrace the “trade offs.”

    How do you approach this?

  2. Jason Dick says:

    Great comments, Leanne. I think that it is really important that you believe in and put yourself in your work. I’ve found that I can’t completely separate myself from my work because I put part of myself into it. How boring would life be if we were not invested at all in our jobs.

    But, I think that it is important to have “hobbies” or “leisure” time especially if you are really invested in your work. It is great to be really plugged into your work and to prevent burn-out I will try and have projects and things that I invest in outside work.

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