Career Conflict – Happiness of Your Family and Your Professional Growth


Happiness and success in life is all about choices that we make.

One thing is sure that you cannot keep everyone happy and at times you need to choose or prioritize whose happiness is most important to you. It is these decisions which set the pace of your life. It is these decisions which reflect your values and principles.

If you are not happy, you cannot make others happy, howsoever hard you may try. It is like, love yourself and respect yourself to be loved and respected by others.

We all have gone through this dilemma at one or another stage of our life, when we have to choose between the happiness of our family and our professional growth and have to sacrifice one for another. You need both love and support of your family and success and growth in your professional life (in your career). You cannot give your 100% to your family and 0% to your profession and you cannot give 0% to your family and 100% to your profession. It is like Game Theorem, wherein the actual size of market will remain same and loss of one will be gain of another and it is up to the individual to set the balance.

In this article we will learn about that conflict of our life.

Understanding the Family

You cannot have control on your birth. Once you are in this world and grown-up enough to understand, who you are, you start making choices. At that stage you should not bother about anyone except your parents. Once you complete your basic qualification, your schooling, Coaching you start making choices and here whatever choice you make or the decision that you take, will have long-lasting effect in your life. Then you choose area of your interest and followed by your decision about the type of career that you want. You choose to get married. You choose to have kids. Now, for you your family consists of your parents, your spouse and your kids. Sometimes, you can have “Conflict of Interest” in these family members as well.

Understanding the need to have profession / career

Love, care, understanding and togetherness, all these are required in life but along with these things, you need many other things in life and for that you need money. You don’t need to be a billionaire or the wealthiest person in the world, but you need fair amount of money / wealth to get the basic necessities of life, which can be as basic as food, shelter and cloths.

1. You need money to buy a house

2. You need money to give good education and career to your kids

3. You need money to take care of the medical needs and healthcare issues of your family

4. You need “enough” money to take care of you (without being dependent on your kids) after your retirement

And this money needs to be earned.

Apart from financial security, you need professional growth to

1. Be Respected

2. Be Recognized

3. Be Rewarded

4. Satisfy your ego

5. Feel the power

6. Motivate your inner self

To grow professionally, you need the support of your family (mostly your spouse, if you are married) and you need professional growth to take care of your family in a better manner.

Professional Crisis – Relocation (Case Study)

If I get everything at my door-step, I do not need to go anywhere and my life will be so peaceful and satisfying. But, that is not the case. Sometimes, due to professional commitments, you need to move to a different place and that is a real crisis that most of us face in our professional life and it is here that you need the utmost support of your family. Here, there are three situations:

1) You are unmarried.

2) You are married and your spouse is not working.

3) You are married and both of you are working.

4) You are married but do not have kids. Or you have kids but they are less than five years of age.

5) You are married and have grown-up kids.

I asked one question in my training program to understand the thinking process of people. Question was: “You get an opportunity in a different city (might be in a different country), for a salary three-times your present salary and for a designation, which is four levels above your present designation. What will you do? Will you accept the offer?”

There is a clear difference in the thought process of male and female respondents.

87% of females are of the opinion that for them family is important. If they are working, they will not accept such job offer (career advancement) and they expect the similar decision from their male counterparts.

69% of males prefer togetherness with their family over such career advancement.

Here are some of the responses:

1. Abhinav Sahai (Business Analyst at Ernst & Young): “Personally, I feel that career is very important in life and one person from a family can make the entire family proud of his actions. As in armed forces, they work dedicatedly and whole-heartedly but still they go back to their families at least once a year. So the family ties are important, but the chance to make an impact on your professional life is also worth a lifetime of an effort”

2. Nauman Malik (Research & Development Director and Software Consultant): “Simple answer is, if family is supportive and has some good understanding then one can work at any place in the world. It totally depends on the understanding level.

3. Taruna Rao Madan (Project Manager at Amdocs Dev Ltd): “Its completely matter of priorities; and everyone has their own priority. Priorities differ from time to time; for a person starting the career, profession takes upper seat and as a married person family becomes more important. I also feel that if one side is family emotions / marriage and on the other side is your profession, both sides can complement each other and can restrict each other. It depends on how people involved in it deal with the situation. I guess it happens with nearly everyone and people involved have to choose; sometimes it’s at a smaller scale and sometimes it’s a major decision.


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