Jon and I were talking today about the big ‘quality of life’ question. Do you have better quality of life by having more time and working less? Or do you have better quality of life having money and being able to do the things you love in your free time?
I guess it was sparked by talking about the Great Resignation, where a considerable chunk of the workforce are resigning for better quality of life and/or better working conditions elsewhere.
Covid has changed a lot of things and has put the question of quality of life at the forefront.
I was thinking of writing a blog about this question but then I figured you could look in any newspaper, magazine, or online blog and find an article about it ready-made.
I thought it might be more helpful to look at how you make the decisions about what’s more important to you.
One of the ways I try to make decisions about big things like quality of life is to set up some forced choice statements for myself. So in an instance like this I would write a list of statements – 10 to 15 of them – with the things I like most from both sides.
For example I might have one saying “I get to afford overseas holidays with my friends” and another saying “I have time to do my hobbies”. The list would go on “I get to eat out at nice restaurants” and “I get to slow down and relax”. You get the picture.
I would then compare the first statement to the second and choose which one was more important to me. Let’s say statement #1 was. I would then compare that to statement #3. Let’s say statement #1 was more important again. I would compare it to statement #4.
You work your way through the list until you have one left – that’s the most important thing to you. Put the number #1 next to it. Now go through again (leaving your number #1 out of the list) to get your number #2. Keep it up til you have five.
Then you can see which life you lean towards more. A life of working more and having more money or one of more time and less money?
Obviously you can use this process for other decisions. Not everyone is having the quality of life discussion or even the quality of life option – although that doesn’t seem to be stopping the people resigning.
It can be really interesting to force yourself to make choices and even better to do it on paper where you can see it all mapped out. I think when you’re making comparisons you don’t go into the nitty gritty, just a more general sense of what each side would be like.
This process makes you think about the nitty gritty. It’s also quite interesting to see what you choose. I remember doing this process for something else a while ago and being surprised at my final five.
Even if you don’t have quality of life questions now, try the process of decision making. It will help you remember it when there is a decision you need to make.