Unless you live in a remote area, completely surrounded by nature (and maybe some meditating monks), then you’re bound to get sucked into the idea that life is all about working, making money, earning status, and climbing professional ranks. When everybody else around you believes that, and your entire life is geared towards that idea, it becomes a vortex you get sucked into. In some ways, humans never learn; the happiest people on the planet have a good work/life balance, and yet, most people think they can beat the system, throw that balance off, and somehow be happier. It never works, so stop trying to cheat the system. Here are healthy thoughts to think, or write down somewhere, for times you’re in need of better work-life balance.
You won’t be here forever
You’re dedicating your limited days to an industry or company that could potentially be around for centuries, but you won’t. And that industry or company, sorry to say it, won’t miss you when you’re gone. But you’ll miss the time you didn’t spend doing things you love.
There are successful people who are happy
Did you know that Bill Murray doesn’t even have an agent? He doesn’t like the fuss of it all and the stress of feeling like he has to book something. He has a hotline, and he listens to pitches himself. He calls people back if he’s interested, and doesn’t if he isn’t. He isn’t stressed by the idea of going a long time without work; he only wants to do the work that makes him happy.
Would you trade your loved ones for anything?
If someone told you today you could have your dream job, but it would mean you could never see your loved ones again, would you take it? Of course not. And that, my friend, shows you where your true source of happiness lies. So pay more attention to it.
This industry won’t be around forever
Apps, entertainment, hybrid cars—they’re all respectable and impressive things. But they, like you, won’t be here forever. So they shouldn’t get all of your attention. If you’re religious or even spiritual, then you know your emotional bond with the people you love will exist somewhere forever if you cultivate it.
If you lose your health, then it’s all for nothing
If you are working hard to enjoy some money or success some day, but your work ends up affecting your health (through excess stress, lack of sleep, etc.) then it was all for nothing. You won’t be able to enjoy what you were working for if you destroy your body along the way.
Personal bonds are hard to repair
If you get off track a little with work, you can always bounce back; if you get off track with your family, romantic partner and friends, you’ll have a very difficult time repairing those bonds.
Why did you get into this in the first place?
Think about what you do. Let’s say, for example, you work in IT, and you like helping people stay connected through technology. You can also do that by volunteering for a non-profit that raises funds to give cell phones to elderly people living on welfare who don’t get to talk to their family enough.
Tomorrow is not guaranteed
This is always important to remember. You may tell yourself, “I’ll travel tomorrow” or “I’ll spend more time with my family tomorrow once I’ve achieved my goals.” Who said tomorrow would be there? Nobody promised that.