We can’t dispute the fact that work is part of our daily lives but how is it affecting us? In fact, for many people, it is the principal facet of their lives. People struggle to gain names for themselves through their occupations. For example, when asked ‘what do you do?’ A lot of people would like to provide answers such as ‘I am a doctor’ or ‘I am a lawyer.’ It looks like we delight in our professions more than we think of our health and other important aspects of our life.
Which do you prefer as an individual? Taking charge of your job or vice versa? Your job may be offering you a relatively higher salary and so you’d also want to work your life away. Of course, if you’re lucky, you might have a job which is rewarding, fits your innate interests and skills, and which you find interesting.
It’s good to work hard but when you break down it will be difficult getting back on track anytime soon. The truth is; your employer will hire a new employee to fill your job position when you break down and unable to go to work. It hurts tight? That’s actually the reality on the ground.
Your Working conditions may be better but they aren’t enough to counter what you’ll go through without any life outside of work. As some people enjoy everything about their job, others aren’t so lucky and do jobs that are monotonous and boring. In this case, if you enjoy your work, it’s rather imperative to make work a facet of our lives, rather than it defining our lives.
There are so many things to do and learn in life, so many experiences to absorb, so many different ways to advance, so many activities to enjoy including leisure, but while we spend so much time working, it’s difficult to find time and energy for these things. Meanwhile, these are the things that make us happy. How then do we define happiness in our lives when we refuse to see or do the things that make us happy? In reality, anything taken to excess is wasteful whether it is work or leisure.
I once asked a friend, ‘Chloe, when will all these things you’ve been busy with be over?’ Do you know what happened? She couldn’t answer me but just smiled. I actually thought she had nothing to say but she did say something. She replied by saying ‘I don’t know when and I have nothing to show for it. Meanwhile, I put in my best expecting that the best outcome is on the way.’ I’m talking about a friend who is always busy with work and has no free time for herself.
Chloe is in her late twenties, yet single. What do you think has accounted for her singleness? Her job! Yes, her job comes before anything else including her relationship. She broke up with her ex-boyfriend because she felt her relationship with him was draining her of the energy needed for work. But was it worth it when she’s got nothing to show for all the sacrifices she made for her job?
There are people like my friend Chloe who are treated as nothing more than objects of labour, working in atrocious conditions for meagre wages that buy nothing for them, and usually dying at a young age. There is more to life than to work yourself to death. No work is more important than your life so you have to stop idolising your job as if you can’t do anything without it.
Yes, it is providing you with the things you need but what if it is killing you? Trust me, your company can get a replacement on the very same day you work yourself to death. It is good to work and achieve laurels but not to the detriment of your health.
But what’s the alternative, you might ask? You still have to work but take it easy on yourself. And in any case, possibly we need to rethink our whole relationship to work.
Funny enough, on Monday mornings, some of our colleagues get to ask ‘how was your weekend?’ As if time-off was like a month with uninterrupted rest and partying. Trying to pack a lifetime of fun into just some two days out of your seven days of work is just a system for failure.
It is not so good when you can go to work knowing that this is exactly the time you are supposed spending with your family. You can have work goals and still live a normal life without necessarily working your life away. Life without goals is meaningless so create meaning for your life.
Your tasks at work may be stimulating but don’t forget that other people in your life must be important to you just like your job is important to you. What are some of the things that excite and uplift you now? What do you enjoy doing and what is important to you? You may have accumulated many skills but which ones do you really want to use now? Your job may be draining you now. If the stress of working on empty motivation has caught up with you, get to recognize who you’ve become. Give yourself the chance to have work that enhances your life, instead of incapacitating it. You’ve got to enjoy work and have time for yourself too.