The challenge of balancing our professional and personal lives

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Most of us are told from our youth that we can achieve anything that we set out to do, and this ideal might lead us to great success. It might also, however, saddle some who do not reach their goals with incredible feelings of guilt and anguish. The conflict of unrealistic expectations can lead to high levels of stress, negative attitudes, self-esteem problems, detachment, illness, and an inability to cope. People in the athletic training profession should take heed of a closing thought paraphrased from the conclusion of Robinson's work: At one time the prevailing wisdom was that smoking was harmless and that drunk driving was no one else's business. The condemning facts and the antismoking and anti-drunk-driving advocates turned public opinion around. We can do the same for the harmful (and sometimes deadly) overwork habit. No one should be asked to compromise their pursuit of excellence, but if we are truly concerned that we are overworked as a profession, we must all be encouraged to use strategies that will result in better balance in our lives. Perhaps more of our members that are held in high regard should spend more time discussing whether they have been successful in balancing their professional and personal lives and how they have been able to accomplish this. Wouldn't it be great if some day, after reflecting on their accomplishments, athletic training professionals did not feel the need to apologize to anyone for achieving excellence? © 2005 Human Kinetics.

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Athletic Therapy Today

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