Wednesday, April 27, 2011

'Art de Vivre'

The French lifestyle in true sense can be called a balanced lifestyle. What I mean by a ‘balanced lifestyle’ is a routine where work and vacation, fun and hard work, family and career are completely balanced. French call it “Art de vivre”. It is, in true sense, a very beautiful art of living. The French have a 35 hour work week when they work, they have a long lunch break when they enjoy their meal in a relaxed fashion, they have vacation at the end of a certain period when they travel with family and friends to neighbouring country or city. Everything seems to be aimed towards enjoying life more and reducing stress.

French do not compromise when it comes to enjoying life and that same value is reflected on individual’s family life. In France, every family seems to live very artistically. While the French culture can be described as being influenced by beauty and elegance rather than efficacy, it can also be defined by the expected fulfillment of duties and responsibilities towards ones family. French family life is a perfect balance between a happy, relaxing upbringing and a duty-seeking environment. Furthermore, it is a matter about paying back what you had once received. As young infants and youth parents fulfill their responsibilities as parents and when the child grows up certain obligations are anticipated of him or her towards the family.

A student at Amiens School Of Management who is a third year graduate level student remarks, ‘family values in France does not necessarily support the idea of separating after one is capable of supporting oneself, there are certain duties that are expected to be fulfilled’. The student’s remark is very apparent in practice in Amiens at least where students age 25-26 are still living with their family while still having a well paid job or an internship. Helping and supporting their family by living with in the family highlights the importance togetherness in French culture.

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