Why making a Life is more important than making a living!
Are you someone who absolutely loves heading to the Office every day? Or even if you don’t maybe you’re connected enough that you simply cannot resist showing up. You keep giving your all unceasingly; sometimes murdering yourself, all the time hoping that this turns out to be your best bet at acing everybody’s attention and getting taller professionally.
I guess, people who fit in this category are unwittingly married to their jobs and often are set out as ‘living to work’.
If you’re a Zoomer, you know what it’s like; the excitement of being resourceful, independent and liberal is overwhelming, way better than the dudes from Gen-X might have experienced. You’re the perfect portrayal of a deep seated personal connection to the work that you do for a fat pay-check. Perhaps you believe that success happens only to those who have an all–round desire and true commitment to work. You’re not unaware as well that this runs the risk of compromising health and quality of life outside work place.
Yet on the flip side, many choose to separate the idea of ‘doing what I love’ from “I’ll do what I must to make a living”. For them it like ‘discovering a long lost passion’; so foreign and yet entirely removed from reality where work is what you do and not who you are!
Speaking of which, do you take on more work than you must? Are you putting in more hours than you ought to? When is the time to quietly start doing less to the extent that it appears not quitting after all?
How bad is too much of a good thing?
Living to work for most of us is like crossing the fine line between being occupied and being eaten-up by work. Your work life balance is at risk when you let disproportionate amount of your time and energy spent on your career.
People, who live to work count heavily on work for thrills and kicks and shut out other sources of joy and happiness. What’s worse, addicted to the adrenaline that comes from solving a crisis or tying self-worth to work, these people would often find themselves on the fast track to burnout.
See…over engagement is never free of its perils. With time, distraught work-life balance takes its toll. Your ability to handle stress is impaired and your overall well being gets affected. And more often than not, you won’t be to see it because you’re moving so fast, completely absorbed in the reality that you’ve created — knowingly or not.
So what’s the point?
When you fail to find the ‘just right’ level of engagement, you live your life on one extreme or the other always struggling to find the right kind of work-life balance.
But the grass is not greener for those either who consider doing little less at work, re prioritize work versus life or refuse to take a bigger chew than the one’s mandated or must.
Hell yes of course!…When you work to live, you miss out on that rich sense of fulfillment that only a meaningful pursuit brings forth.
Did I miss something?
The 10 hour work day -like so many people I braced for 30 long years, -never ever for once went out of fashion. It stood firm then and it’s as stoic today except that nowadays it’s your call how to balance everything in the new age. The strings were as tight then as they are now.
Jinxed and marred with bad breaks, I spent an entire lifetime slogging to build a career and in the process woefully destroyed part of me. I kept judging whether it was of any worth at all, despite knowing all the while that in reality I couldn’t ‘undo’ or ‘reboot’ anything. I had no widget, no push button…none other than a blue sky above and some wishful thinking. I yearned for one. So many things I would’ve loved to rescript for a better tomorrow! Of course, there was always another tactical choice at hand; “Do it the new way. This certainly was a flattering option and like everybody else my age, I was gullible. I fell for it and chose to use it.
The thought of shaping a better life and a taller me never felt fictional then.
I know I’ve never been great at work and I have struggled long enough trying to figure out why I wasn’t fine and famous at it. I would usually end up comparing myself to friends and rivals who have been fervently neck deep in work and have made some great careers and good living out of it.
It’s only after so many years of imperfections and wanting, I could discover that I was in fact truly happy, living my life doing what I wanted to do- endeavoring, indulging and battling! Sometimes winning at others loosing, yet never letting myself forget the battles that I survived.
I had chosen to work what I “could do” and not what I “wanted to do”.
If only I had known then what I know now, maybe I could have had both of them a lot sooner- ‘living a great life and making a living the way I love most’.
I would let the life happen!
Life is short and full of shifts and ebbs and flows. You just can’t exist to make a living. It’s more than about living decently… ordinarily! We all deserve more and entitled to a life full of joy and happiness.
And who said it’s too late to flatter yourself?
I know how important is to earn for a good living. But you can make a living and still make a life! It’s all about perspective; about whom you love most; you as a person or as a pen pusher. With pliable mindset and a bit of allowance for wise adjustments you could let the real troubleshooter in you make life deep and smiling.
Of course, ‘working to live ‘or ‘living to work’ aren’t the only choices available. It’s absolutely possible to put the two shoes together and yet walk on sunshine. Breaking away from either of the two could though actually help you find a breezy life-work balance in a hurry.
Seriously, sometimes taking a few steps back — or a few steps forward — breaks the barrier standing between you and the life you have painted for yourself!