Saturday, July 23, 2011

A Work/Life Balance is Bull$@#!

If you don't love your job then quit!  Because if you don't love your job then you are on the losing end of a bad relationship.  In fact if you are constantly upset, worried, bitching and unhappy - you are wasting your time.  I'm not talking clinically here.  I'm talking you're worried about finances, you don't like your job, you don't like the way you look, you're constantly angry, you never have enough time to do X, and the list goes on.

The problem with being upset, worried, bitching, unhappy and a whole slew of other crappy words, is that they give the illusion of doing something about it.  It lulls us into a false sense of "since I feel this way I am doing something about it."  The worst part about that situation is that eventually feeling bad becomes the norm.

I say that is BS! Feeling good is the norm.  Being happy is the norm.  Life is for living.  Sure we'll all have those off days.  Of course we all will have times to worry - we're only human.  But if they become regular then there is a problem that needs to be fixed!

The solution to being happy... is YOU.  Crazy, I know.  But only you can make you happy.  That totally sounds like fortune cookie BS.  So what's the alternative?  To pin your happiness to other people, your job, your clothes, your car, your bank account.  I don't know about you but the only thing I have control over on that list is ME.

How do you find the happiness that is inside of you?  Do something!  Action.  If you are tired of worrying about bills then make a budget and stick to it.   If you are tired of the way you look then go for a 5 minute walk.  Just do something.  That something will lead to more somethings.  Just make it small at first and measurable.  However, don't put it off.  We're only human and delaying gratification isn't one of our strong suits.  

What caused this wild hair up my...?  It's the fact that I feel like I know some great secret and I'm not telling anyone.  It's the fact that I see great people every day who aren't where they want to be.  It's the fact that for a lot of things I may have accomplished, there are still areas of my life were I sit back and bitch and get jealous and unhappy about (talking about writing and publishing a book here.)  And this is the crux of the problem.  We segregate our lives into these lanes - be damned if these lanes happen to cross!  Some overlap for sure but it is more like a highway overpass for the majority of us.  What lanes am I talking about?  All of them.  Every single label you can think to give yourself.  Dr, lawyer, mother, brother, father, son, boyfriend, starving artist, chef, farmer, surfer, employee, writer - can I stop the list?

The point is that when we create these multiple lanes we are trying to multi-task our lives.  We've set up a system that facilitates adult ADD and guarantees us failure.  But failure is not bad.  Failure is good.  Failure is ONLY bad if we don't learn from it and keep doing it over and over and over.  Sounds like most of our days.  Well how mine used to sound. 

Every aspect of our lives should be moving us closer to our dreams.  Is your dream to have an incredibly tight and close family?  Then your job should help you achieve it not something you need to balance against.  Is your dream to cure blindness in Nepal?  Then your monthly gym membership should be getting you ready to be in Nepal.  If it isn't cut it and apply that money to moving to Nepal earlier. 

How you are as a sibling or a parent should be how you are in your business, at the gym, hiking, sailing, whatever.  The underlying principal here is character.  That is who you truly are; not some kind of label.  Don't identify with those labels because if at some point - hopefully not - they go away you'll lose yourself with it.  I know, I've been there and it took me nearly a year to get out of my depression.  I didn't even know I was depressed till I started to feel better again and realized life shouldn't be so damn hard.

There is nothing wrong with singular focus.  In fact, multi-tasking doesn't work anyways.  As long as we try and create a work/life balance we'll be forever stuck trying to balance our life instead of living it.  And that, unfortunately, is good thing for companies.  They need customers and employees.  We can't have everyone gallivanting off to live out their dreams.  I say it one last time the idea of a work/life balance is bull$@#!.  Do Something!

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