Despite magazine covers and media platforms portraying women struggling to balance work and family, men are nearly as frazzled by the same challenge, a new study on work-life balance reveals.

Modern women have crossed the boundaries of the labor force, but overall, the sexes haven’t swapped or equalized roles. Women still do more housework than men, and men still do more paid work. However, lead researcher Kristen Shockley of the University of Georgia believes that the phrase "work-life balance" being attributed to women alone is something the media is responsible for.

"It's just a huge disconnect, because the media almost always frames it as a women's issue," Shockley said, in an interview with Live Science.

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The trouble with work-life balance

In an attempt to clear out the issue, Shockley and her team performed a meta-analysis. Research of work-life balance has been done in the past, and so they retrieved more than 300 different studies tackling the issue. The accumulated research papers all had varied points, but one question that’s similarly addressed is how much work responsibilities interfered with family life, or vice versa.

The results of the expansive study indicated that more women reported conflicts on work-life balance, but only by a meager 0.017, which, according to Shockley, “practically speaking, is zero.”

The researchers also examined ratings of gender equality for the countries where the studies were conducted, and they were surprised to find that men and women reported similar levels of work-family conflict regardless of the level of gender equality in their country.

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Confoundingly, a study published in 2013 also resulted in slightly similar results. Focusing on working parents, the study found that 34 percent of working fathers and 40 percent of working mothers claimed they always feel hurried, and a nearly equal share of mothers and fathers said they wish they could be at home raising their children rather than working.

How important is work-life balance for modern workers?

Are personal life and work something you can balance, or should life be viewed through a lens of priorities? We all have competing demands in life, and the busier we get, the easier it is to get swept away into an unbalanced dynamic. Fortunately, though, it’s not too hard to hit the reset button and find that happy medium again.

So yes, it is possible to achieve it. The key is, understand the value of pace. There are times when you need to throttle up and there are times when you can throttle down. Self-awareness is crucial. Doing so will help you enjoy the journey as much as the destination, regardless of one’s gender or sexual orientation. #Work Life Balance #Work Family Balance #Health