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Ivanka Trump explains why work-life balance is 'impossible'

Ivanka TrumpCourtesy of Ivanka TrumpIvanka Trump with her son, Joseph.

If Ivanka Trump is your role model for “having it all,” it might be time to rethink what that means.

The 33-year-old EVP of development and acquisitions for The Trump Organisation and mother of two recently said, “You can’t have it all.” When people ask her how she balances work and life, her response is always: “I don’t, and I don’t try to.”

In an interview with Business Insider, Trump explained her perspective on work-life balance.

“People obsess too much about balance,” she said. “A scale is only in balance for a brief second. Inevitably the pendulum swings. It’s impossible to maintain.”

While previous generations may have been able to compartmentalise home life and work life, there’s no longer a clear delineation between the two. Rather than strive for perfect balance, Trump said she focuses on her immediate priorities.

In practice, that means she calls to check on her daughter between meetings during the day, comes home to make dinner with her husband and put her children to bed, and signs back on to respond to emails at 11 p.m.

“From a scheduling perspective, if I’m planning a work trip, I know not to book something the night before the trip because I want to be with my family,” Trump said. “If I have a deal come up, I might work three weeks straight. Then I have other moments, like if [my daughter] Arabella is sick, which change the dynamic.”

At the end of the day, Trump tries to remember, “Life is a marathon, not a sprint. It’s about taking a bigger-picture approach.”

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