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We Are All Flawed By Our Perceptions Of Reality

We Are All Flawed By Our Perceptions Of Reality

The story is stand-alone yet linked.  The Life to come by Michelle de Kretser offers meditations on intimacy, loneliness, and our flawed perception of reality. Enormously moving, gorgeously observant of physical detail, and often very funny, this new novel by Michelle de Kretser reveals how a shadows cast by both the past and the future can transform and pose the current.

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    Vibrancy, vividness, depth and quality acting

    Occurring in Australia, France, and Ceylon, The Life to Appear is about the reports we tell, nor explain to ourselves as individuals, as societies, and as countries. Driven by a vibrant cast of characters, it explores necessary emigration, the art of fiction, and ethnic and class discord. As Hilary Mantel has written, “I so enjoy Michelle de Kretser’s powerful technique–her characters feel in existence, and she can create a sweeping narrative that encompasses a number of yet still retain the sharp, almost hallucinatory detail.”

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    Astoundingly real, mentally stimulating

    This extraordinary book by a long way Franklin-winning creator Michelle de Kretser will punch to your spirit and make you feel the characters come alive in such a way that their complete biopsy will be presented to you in a matter of sentences. Her writing is very witty, but it additionally goes deep, prepared at every point by the harmless and far-reaching intellect that is clearly reflected in her writing; nothing is simple, yet it’s presented in such a way that the reader will have no trouble comprehending it. Michelle is a dazzlingly attained author who orders all the strokes. Her repertoire extends from a hallucinatory sense of location to a mastery of suspense, superior verbal artistry and a formidable skill in navigating those twisty pathways where record and mindset entwine.

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    A standout book full of witty humor

    The life to come is an absolutely amazing book. It’s an honest, funny and moving portrait of modern life. de Kretser’s characters are often unlikable, but because she’s so unsparing in her pictures of them – every flaw goes under the microscope. It took me a while to settle into the structure, which leaps around with time a little bit and shifts focus quite all of a sudden, but this really is an impressive achievement. The characters act as individuals and feel alive; her writing can a sweeping narrative which includes years, yet still withhold the pointed. The whole book is depicted in an almost hallucinatory and vivid way. Michelle de Kretser is aware how to create a gripping report. She creates quickly and softly of wonderful and horrendous things which makes her book the life to come even more tantalizing for the readers.

    Reading Duration: 7 hours 16 minutes

    If you want your senses to be tantalised and mental resources to be stretched, then this book is the perfect specimen for improving your view of the world. Get The Life to Come from Amazon at $24.96

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    More by this author

    Lifehack Reads

    Lifehack Reads is the curated collection of our favorite books, carefully categorized and sorted by our Editorial Team.

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    1 How to Achieve a Realistic Work Life Balance 2 13 Essential Self-Care Tips for Busy People 3 20 Best Guided Meditations for Sleep and Insomnia 4 13 Work Life Balance Tips for a Happy and Productive Life 5 How to Spot Job Burnout and Cope with It

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    Last Updated on September 4, 2019

    How to Achieve a Realistic Work Life Balance

    How to Achieve a Realistic Work Life Balance

    Kate is a hard-working manager working at a startup company.  She toils at work but gets that nagging feeling that she’s missing out on living her life. And then perversely, when she’s not working, she tries to switch off ‘work-mode’ to enjoy her passions, friends, family… but eventually she finds that she just doesn’t have the energy.

    Many people are like Kate, misunderstanding the true meaning of work life balance. They try to keep ‘work’ and ‘life’ separate, but this brings undesirable results.

    The Mystery of Work Life Balance

    Those who are trying to maintain a work life balance only by dividing their time – by driving a sharp wedge between work-mode and life-mode – are inadvertently dividing themselves.

    When people juxtapose ‘work’ and ‘life’, they unconsciously think in terms of ‘work’ versus ‘life’ – and are constantly forced to choose one at the expense of the other.  In this framework, a gain on one side is always a loss on the other side.

    And so people start to see ‘work’ as the times when they are not living their lives. ‘Work’ is seen as a necessary evil that they must suffer through until it’s time to switch off. But if you encode everything related to work as negativity and suffering, while your ‘life’ strains under the weight of unrealistic expectations of enjoyment, there really is no balance there at all.

    Re-balancing work and life is possible by seeking out a new and enjoyable job to a certain extent. But no job is perfect. There are always going to be tedious aspects to any job. And before long you’ll wind up on the same ‘life’ versus ‘work’ see-saw because you haven’t changed the old framework.

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    How to Achieve a Realistic Work Life Balance

    The true goal is to redistribute the positive (+) and negative (-) evenly across life.

    Most people try to make it all positive off work to compensate the negativity at work like this:

      If it’s all negative at work and all positive when the work mode is switched off, the work performance will suffer – creating even more negativity. People will lean heavily on their off-mode life for happiness, but they can’t truly achieve happiness because they are not facing the problems at work.

      Conversely, there are those who do strive to put positivity into their work life. Their work life balance looks like this:

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        Unfortunately, if these people are still stuck in the old on/off framework, all the negativity will shift to their off-mode self, and their relationships and health will suffer.

        Very few lucky people experience positivity on both sides of the equation, their work life balance looks like this:

          If you are one of those who experience positivity in both sides, lucky you! You are one of the less than 5% of the population.

          For the rest of the 95% of the population, here is a cure to having a realistic work life balance.

          The solution is to recover the sense of a unified self. When you do, you’ll dismantle the competing work/life binary, and you’ll stop unconsciously labelling work as ‘suffering’ and life as ‘enjoyment’. Positive energy will begin to flow smoothly and effortlessly through your life.

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          To recover the sense of a unified self, ask yourself: Why do I really do what I do, in life and in work?

          Your answer to this question make up your blueprint of a unified self, charged with meaning that relates directly to who you are and what you care about.

          Use your blueprint now to examine your life at work, your leisure time and your relationships and see if they align with each other. The new framework is no longer ‘balance’, but ‘alignment’.

          This will reveal to you a number of things:

          • There are aspects of your work that are not suffering: Look again and you’ll find many positive aspects that reflect what you care about. For example, you may value creativity, and realize that you get the opportunity to show it at work every day.
          • Things you care about at ‘work’ are the same as what you care about in your ‘life’: For example, you may value friendship in your life, and you also practice this value with your colleagues. Your values exist in all your interactions, and serve your unified self.
          • What you do at work and what you do in your life support and enhance each other: For example, the same generosity you show your friends can forge good client relationships when practiced at work. Your resourcefulness at work can be used to solve obstacles in your personal life.

          Crucially, you never need to use the on/off work model again because you’re constantly acting in accordance with what you truly value. As a result, you’ll find that your positive energy will not be subject to draining or overflowing, off/on, but will instead flow consistently through all your states of being in a perpetual positive feedback loop.

          This is how a realistic work life balance is like:

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            Your renewed conceptualisation from ‘balance’ to ‘alignment’ is an inner transformation that can empower you whatever your current circumstances are.

            For example, it may reveal that you truly are suffering in your current job. But now you can unroll your blueprint to identify the cause of the negativity (i.e. what isn’t aligning with what you value?) and either remind yourself why you’re really doing what you’re doing, or make a tweak… or indeed change your job.

            Even if the latter, you can still be sustained by positivity until you find that new job. You may hate your everyday tasks, but one of things you value is to be a good provider for your family – so you’re spurred on, knowing that you’re doing that every day.

            Or if you’re a workaholic, your blueprint may reveal that what you previously undervalued as ‘off-mode’ (relaxing, having fun, pursuing a passion, spending time with family and friends) actually contain a wealth of values that support – and even enhance – a well-rounded working life.

            A value-rich and optimally tuned work life alignment helps maintain a flow of positive energy and happiness in all aspects of being. So go ahead and make the blueprint for yourself!

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