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Work life Balance - Our duty to be engaged by Dorothy Jarvis-Lee

ubu has long been a champion of encouraging each other, as team members, to achieve a ‘work-life balance’ and that has to include “switching off” when our working day is over.


Achieving a balance means ensuring that team members are supported to respect themselves and those they serve by making sure that they are feeling fresh, properly rested and ready to be fully engaged in everything they do, even when no one is looking. Only then are we able to contribute reliably, safely and with commitment to the person-led culture of ubu’s service and support to vulnerable people.


The world we live in today is very demanding on each one of us, not just at work but at home and in our leisure lives. It is interesting to note that at the beginning of this year the French government enacted “Right To Disconnect” legislation to ensure companies respect an employee’s right to switch off from their working day and to stop it from intruding into their out-of-hours, private lives.

It’s a necessary response to a working culture sometimes called “always-on” in which people never fully stop working and it can lead to exhaustion and often burn-out. It’s a pressing challenge to mental and emotional health.


Demonstrating real engagement with what you are doing is the most important requirement of giving support to, and enabling, vulnerable people to achieve more independence in their lives. We are a ‘person-led’ service and our role is to listen to and really hear what people need and what they want to do next. It takes remarkable concentration to achieve. This is about being immersed in the natural ‘flow’ of what you are doing and totally unobtainable if you are not fully present and engaged in what you are doing.


The people we serve rely on us to act fairly, kindly and with honesty and openness in everything we do to support their needs and help them to build the life they desire.


When we come to the end of our working day we need to disconnect, refresh ourselves and live our own lives to the full. I also know that it is our duty to be engaged at all times whenever we are working in order to be capable of providing the person-led enablement and care to those we have promised.


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