Many moons ago I was studying in a university whose student body was mostly international. One Lunar New Year, I invited my entire building for Eve dinner. Fuelled by my desire to share Malaysian cooking and make my family away from home happy (when I say family, it eventually was well over 55 hungry students) I set out to cook for three days straight.
Today, I am considerably better at setting my goals and having a balance between what I achieve at work and, if not anything else, the number of hours I sleep (mostly!).
Last week, several of our contributors underlined the fact that with the demands we face today, we really need to choose work we are passionate about because there may not be enough hours left in the day to recharge. Always the ambidextrous economist, and a health economist at that, I chose to focus on health and wealth this week. For as much as we love what we do, we need to still make the right choices with regard work-life balance in order to sustain our performance levels.
Evelyn Teh asserts that health and well-being at the workplace requires integrated efforts of employers, employees and society, and walks us through five key aspects of how we can all be accountable for our collective health.
What is an unlimited vacation policy? Morag Barrett believes employees can and should be trusted to take the appropriate number of vacation days – and therefore, negates the need to allocate a set number of vacation days.
John Walter Baybay writes about how there is a tendency to work so hard that we start neglecting our health which in turn affects our effectiveness at work. Sharing his own experience and conscious decision to prioritise health, he gives us helpful hints on how to make a lasting change.
“Go to sleep!” my father would say every night as I lingered in our study, pretty much throughout my schooldays. Dr Travis Bradberry talks about some serious consequences of sleep deprivation on individuals and the organisations they work for.
In Starting Young, Stephanie Kee enlightens us on what we should pack for a journey of self-discovery – both in a literal and metaphorical sense! And Yasir Osman, in this week’s instalment of Movie Wisdom, helps us draw lessons on work-life balance from the story of how Mary Poppins came to be so much a part of our young lives.
Last and by no means least, our fearless leader Roshan Thiran delves into why some people appear to consistently be luckier than others, and how we might be able to reframe luck as something we can influence rather than just wait for fate to run its course.
On that note, here’s wishing everyone safe travels and joyous days with family and friends during this festive period. To everyone celebrating the Lunar New Year, HAPPY NEW YEAR from Leaderonomics!
Published in English daily The Star, Malaysia, 14 February 2015