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Living

From our commute to work and the tiny rituals we peform throughout the day, to the evening’s chance to relax and reflect, going about our ‘day-to-day’ lives is the most elusive element of our personal economy, yet it represents the the vital glue of our daily existence. We explore how people organise their daily lives.

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Exploring Personal Economy: Living

We talk to Monica, Anna, Phillip and Yiwei and uncover how they live their lives at a micro level, and how this reveals so much about who they are. Fundamentally, we discover how living manifests itself across all the elements of your personal economy.

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The fine art of a personal balancing act

A good balance sheet is at the heart of every successful economy, why should your personal economy be any different?

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Measuring the well-being of societies is a popular debate and talked about more than ever before. Some believe that outstanding economic wealth is the only contributing factor to happiness, while others think that work-life balance plays an equally, if not more, important role.

In the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and Singapore, 'life satisfaction' was rated as more important than 'personal Income'. Source: OECD

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has been involved in this debate for over a decade and has pinpointed 11 topics deemed essential to personal and societal well-being in terms of living conditions and quality of life.

In the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and Singapore, life satisfaction was rated as more important than personal income. In the top performing economies in South America, education was the most important measure of success. China, France and Canada all rated health as the most vital sign of well-being. According to the Better Life Index, Europeans place great importance on work-life balance than career achievement. The stress of working long hours result in an increase in stress and a decline in personal health, and this can jeopardise the success of one’s personal economy.

Mark Albion, an American work-life balance guru and author of Making a Life, Making a Living: Reclaiming Your Purpose and Passion in Business and in Life, taught marketing at Harvard Business School. He had a brilliant career as an academic and as a marketing professional, and despite making a great living, he was miserable in his personal life.

In a recent interview in Fast Company, Albion voiced how he started to feel it was all going wrong. "While my high-paying, high-prestige job made me the envy of my neighbours, I could feel the life being sucked out of me."

He got out of the rat-race and found a way to weave his life goal of happiness with work he enjoys. He set up You & Co., a networking platform that links MBAs to companies that are socially responsible.

Delivering his commencement speech at the Northeastern College of Professional Studies in Boston, USA, one of Albion’s key pieces of advice was “Live your life, not a resume”.

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Life expectancy at birth for males in the UK and Singapore is 80 years, but in the United Arab Emirates it is 76 and in Brazil it is 70 years.

Source: The World Bank.
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