Ben Bartosik

April 9, 2023

Working on the final essay of my much delayed MDIV this week. One of my favourite things about writing is going down rabbit trails on ideas and concepts that are only tangentially related to the topic. It does make my process quite a bit longer but I find I come across so many fascinating ideas.

This morning I’ve been doing a bit of a deep dive into family-work conflict theory. This is when the energy, time, or behaviourial demands of work comes into conflict with your family (source). It seems that for a long time these were two spheres with not a lot of overlap in terms of academic research; however, as women increased in the workforce, more attention began to be given to this conflict. This is largely due to the way in which women’s roles in these two spheres tended to overlap with simultaneous demands on them from both.

What is most relevant to my research is the way in which work-family conflict relates to an overall sense of wellbeing. Studies show that,

Workers who are satisfied with and engaged in their jobs, who can manage the daily stresses of work, and who are able to integrate their work with the rest of their life are happier and more productive."(Source)

Stress, on the other hand, is highly tied to work hours and when the demands of the job bleed into other areas of life. When that balance is thrown off, workers report higher stress which can lead to “psychosomatic symptoms, depression and other forms of psychological distress, use of medication, alcohol consumption, substance abuse, clinical mood disorders, clinical anxiety disorders, and emotional exhaustion.”

This is sort of the central point this paper will be exploring, one’s work life is directly related to the wellbeing of your whole life. Thus, advocating for better work for everyone raises the wellbeing of the whole society. As I will be arguing, this is something churches should take seriously in order to better care for people - as both individuals and families.