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Whose Occupational Balance is it Anyway? Strategies for living a more balanced lifestyle Dr Teena Clouston.

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Presentation on theme: "Whose Occupational Balance is it Anyway? Strategies for living a more balanced lifestyle Dr Teena Clouston."— Presentation transcript:

1 Whose Occupational Balance is it Anyway? Strategies for living a more balanced lifestyle Dr Teena Clouston

2 Methods Purposive sample – ‘key informants…an information rich connection to the research topic’ (Gilchrist & Williams 1999:73) 29 Interviews Interpretive phenomenology analysis Focuses on meaning individuals experience everyday life situations (Brocki & Wearden 2006; Smith & Osborn 2008) Wholeness and uniqueness of the individual (Smith et al 2009). Dr Teena Clouston

3 Occupational IMbalance Intensifi cation Over busy Paid work Dr Teena Clouston There is not time to do everything but every ‘doing’ has its time. These fragments form a hierarchy, but work remains to a large extent essential…the reference to which we try to refer everything else back (Lefebvre 2004, p74). The time bind: Too much ‘doing’ in too little time…..

4 Paid work IS important BUT it should appreciate the ….. ‘sacredness of the moment – when fitted rightly into the rhythms of individual and social and cosmic nature.’ (Meyer 1922:9) Dr Teena Clouston

5 And then there were Five Who lived a balanced lifestyle – There was a sense of doing and being in use of time and in activities – There was a sense of becoming who they wanted to be – There was a sense of less conflict and pressure…… – HOW DID THEY DO IT? Dr Teena Clouston

6 Decided what is meaningful and made choices “I'm a [low grade/band] and have been for God knows how many years. And I've been part-time because I've not really applied for anything else. Because it suited me to stay that grade. And I think I made the choice. Was I going to go all out being sort of aggressive or an ambitious career woman. Or whether I was going to have my priorities my family. And I think people do. They find out their balance. And maybe people do go for their career and the family might take second place. I think with me work is definitely taken second place”. Dr Teena Clouston

7 Lived it Putting those life choices it into action “Well, actually I did drop my hours slightly and compress them a bit, maybe two or three years ago something like that for that very reason. I felt my life was out of balance and I needed to redress it a bit. So I now work nine days out of ten. So I do a five-day week and a four-day week”. Dr Teena Clouston

8 Recognised and accepted That could mean compromises – Like career progression or promotion “I’ve certainly compromised on promotion. And yes. That’s where the compromise is. And part of me feels frustrated about that. But balanced with the way you knew what you were doing; that you knew that you'd have to take responsibility for that. But there is still part of you thinks; 'Well that's a bummer’. But that's how it actually had to be. How it is. And how it still is”. Dr Teena Clouston

9 Valued the positives “It’s just nice to have that day to get your breath, you know? Just to be on my own. It’s lovely being on my own [laugh]. It really sounds awful but it’s, you know the phones aren’t ringing and, you know, [child] is in school; [husband’s] at work. It’s just really nice. It’s allowed me to do things that I enjoy doing on my own…You know, just things like gardening and shopping and sitting down reading a book. It’s just things that you would feel that you were indulging yourself with. I don’t feel guilty about it, you know. But it’s a lot less money [laugh]. I mean that’s the only thing. You know how it is. I have had to sort of manage on less money but it’s worth it, to be honest. It’s made a huge difference.” Dr Teena Clouston

10 Occupational balance Live Recognise Accept Value Think Dr Teena Clouston

11 When that happens Balance being, doing and becoming time become harmonised or reconciled Dr Teena Clouston Doing Self Being Self Becoming Self

12 So in answer to the question Whose occupational balance is it anyway? The answer is yours …If you are prepared and ready enough for it to be We know a happy person is a balanced person so…. Ask yourself ….What IS your balance and LIVE IT. Dr Teena Clouston

13 References Brocki JM, Wearden AJ (2006) A critical evaluation of the use of interpretative phenomenological analysis in health psychology, Psychology and Health, 21, 1, Hochschild A (2000) Time Bind, When Work Becomes Home and Home Becomes Work (2 nd Ed), New York, Henry Holt & Co Gilchrist VJ, Williams RL (1999) Key Informant Interviews in B Crabtree & W Miller (Eds) Doing Qualitative Research, Thousand Oaks, Sage, Lefebvre H (2004) Rhythmanalysis, London, Continuum Meyer A (1922) The philosophy of occupation therapy, Archives of Occupational Therapy, 1,1, 1-10 Smith J, Osborn M (2008) Interpretive phenomenological analysis In JA Smith (Ed) Qualitative Psychology: A Practical Guide to Research Methods, London, Sage, Smith JA, Flowers P, Larkin M (2009) Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis: Theory, Method and Research, London, Sage Publications Dr Teena Clouston


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