I heard something on the radio the other day. I forget the exact context, but it had to do with work / life balance, and the interviewee said:
“If your job is your life, you need to get a new job or get a new life.”
And this kind of made me sad, because, for me, it’s impossible to separate the two. Until that nasty incident in June 2009, I’d worked constantly since I was 14 years old, with the notable exception of my first semester freshman year of college when I spent my time on more worthy endeavors. Like smoking in the dorm room. Yes, back then you could still smoke in dorm rooms. Crazy! I know!
I’ve been lucky in that most of my jobs have been very meaningful to me, but it’s really a double-edged sword. Because when things have meaning, they have weight. And when they have weight, they can drag you under. This is to blame, in large part, for my breakdown – too much heft assigned to the job, too much self-worth wrapped up therein, too little time spent cultivating other interests – but I couldn’t have helped it if I tried. And then, without it, I felt so lost. How strange that not working can be just as unhealthy as working too much.
So you think about it, though, and at some point you have to land on the notion that without work, you really can’t live. I mean, work brings money, and who can live without money? Nobody normal, certainly. And people even work who don’t NEED the money, right? Look at Warren Buffett! So those who need work to live, and those who have live to work, but, either way, work is the key. There’s no getting away from it.
I’m curious again, Internet. What’s your work / life balance? How do you strike it?
And, perhaps more to the point, could you smoke in YOUR dorm room?