In Teal Life

Introducing our new blog post category “Teal Life“. Many of our followers express an interest in us IRL “In Real Life”.  Certainly, Dr Vu and I have what I would consider a dream lifestyle. Cherry shares personal glimpses on Facebook, and it is popular, so we will do the same here for our Teal Tribe.

This fits with our philosophy that the borders between life and work are arbitrary and no longer helpful.  In my father’s day, he strictly separated life from work: he left his personal life at the office door and kept his work life out of home.  But that boundary would break down at times. I remember the shock when one of his staff was having a personal crisis on a Saturday, and several tearful people came to the house.  Unthinkable.  Then he was hit by a car and had his leg and mind shattered – suddenly his personal needs greatly impacted his work. Nevertheless, he played a role at work as “professional manager” and very few knew the real Tony.

I followed that pattern for a long time, until my son was born in a difficult 3-day birth where I didn’t leave the hospital, and my boss started ringing to know when I was coming to the 2-day sales meeting because it was “important”.

As I’ve absorbed the new/better ideas of Human Systems Adaptability, I’ve seen how that separation is breaking down:

  • We want and have a right to be more of our whole selves at work (within bounds that we get to set personally).
  • Work is political. We can no longer separate work from society (“it’s just business”).
  • Online working (email, internet, video) is breaking down the barrier and blurring the distinctions.
  • Remote (or hybrid) working is the final death-knell of any separation (except those we try to set ourselves).

Instead of resisting this, Cherry and I have embraced it. We work any day of the week, any hour of the day. When it suits us. We travel for work and play simultaneously:

  • followers will have seen glimpses in the past of Mr Teal, our caravan;
  • we “commute” to Vietnam to work and always have a good time while we are there – we aim to work in at least one new place every time so I get to see the country;
  • in the good old days of going to conferences or work in other countries we always combined it with a bit of a holiday.

So we remove the distinction but we do it on our own terms.

Therefore, it seems right to show  more of that lifestyle: we like to think we are modelling the future – we certainly recommend this pattern of work.

These are all shots of us at work: