Hey, everyone. Alesse here. I’m just another millennial graduate, hoping to find my place in the world. The thing is that lately, most of my friends have been complaining about how their jobs are taking up more and more of their home life. I’m planning on organizing and figuring out a schedule so that I don’t get overwhelmed by all that. I’m definitely not going to turn into one of those people who only talk about work—what a bore! We all need to make time in our lives for rest and relaxation. I’ve done some research and these are some of the tips I’ve read, heard or lived so far about keeping a healthy work-life balance. I’m writing them down so that I’ll remember in the future, but you can use them too.
Be honest with yourself.
Zarieth told me that sometimes I get too excited about projects I work on and forget to take care of myself. I feel like she’s over exaggerating. I mean, sure, I was up up until 2 am trying to perfect my resume, but that’s just because I want to make it amazing.
She suggested that I should sit down and be honest with myself about what my current needs are–financial, emotional, and physical. For example, we need three meals a day, so we should make time for them, instead of working on a project all night and forgetting to eat. Happens more frequently than I thought, just replace “eat” with other verbs such as “love”, “read” or whatever your leisure might be.
We shouldn’t spend all our time trying to earn more money, either–we just need enough to survive and a little extra to tickle our fancy. Instead of trying to make hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, just enjoy what you have and make enough to live comfortably. Most of the times money comes after you begin doing what you love.
Drop activities that waste your time.
I love being busy. Nothing is sweeter than that feeling of accomplishment you get when hustling and getting things done.
Sometimes, though, I’m stretched too thin. I’ll admit it. I take up so many hobbies just because I can! Hey, if you don’t really enjoy your hobbies, or have to drag yourself out of bed to go, then just quit. Hobbies are supposed to make your life happier, duh. Don’t keep going if you don’t really want to!
Here’s some more advice for you: don’t waste your time on people who drag you down. Life is way too short to spend time around people who make you feel sad, depressed, irritated, or angry. Just cut them off and say “goodbye”.
I get that in theory it sounds nice to have lunch with your coworker, but why listen to them if all they do is rant or complain? If someone is bothering you or draining your happiness with their negativity, learn to say “no”. Seriously, taking care of yourself is so important! You take care of your physical health, right? So you shouldn’t neglect your mental health either.
Turn off your devices!
I love playing games on my phone and borrowing Lyra’s iPad to watch videos on YouTube, but I hear that people who are constantly “plugged in” have a harder time relaxing. That’s because they keep getting notifications and emails from their boss or coworkers, and end up “bringing the work home”. Taking work home is one of the most common reasons for an unbalanced work-life.
When you’re on vacation, get into vacation mode and have fun! If you’re eating dinner, turn off your cell phone and enjoy your time with your friends (or family)! If you can unplug and step back for at least a few hours at a time, you’ll be able to gain some perspective. When you distance yourself from assignments you’ve been working on and come back later, you can get a fresh look and see something important you may not have noticed before. Awesome, right?
But add some music
Lyra is always giving me new music to try. She really hates the fact that most of my new music comes from top 40’s. The thing is, some music can really change your day. Having a stressful day? Play some instrumental music from movies! Want to brighten your day? Get to discover new playlists. With so many options nowadays to stream, listen, or discover music, it is an effortless little thing you can do for your work-life betterment.
Don’t ask me about it though, as I said I would point you to whatever is popular on the radio. But do go and see what Lyra has to share on her playlists.
There are no “Perfect” jobs anywhere.
Most people fail to realize this on time, including myself. We waste time and resources trying to find or adapt our reality to a perceived “perfection”. In this “search for perfection”, we keep looking around for stress-free, high paying, rewarding, jobs. And come across some that looks perfect. But when we quit for this new job, we realize that the haircut our friends sport with so much style just doesn’t really fit us. And we long for our hair to grow back again. Like anything in life, we start with a base we like and work it close to perfection.
The only time you should consider looking for a new job is when you don’t feel fulfillment or respect. Also maybe when you don’t see a growth path. We just have to realize that some things come slower and require more work to obtain, such as a reputation.
Your Reputation matters.
IF you do decide to stay on a job, but to “adapt it”, be careful of overdoing it. Our reputation is a fragile thing. All kinds: Online, day-to-day work, family… it all matters and coalesces into the perceived “you”. Earlier, I mentioned the complaining co-workers. Think about it this way, would you like to work with someone who only complains? Can you trust them to do the job correctly? Do you think you can communicate effectively if they are not really into the job?
No to all. Their reputation is a complainer who most likely isn’t truly committed.
So, focus on one objetive and remember that bad actions are more profoundly recalled and used to label someone.
Such is the corporate world and beyond.
Anyways, there you go. Some shared wisdom that’ll help me maintain a work-life balance. I’m planning on implementing these into my daily life as a habit. That way I won’t wake up in the middle of the night mumbling about work (ew!).