As you begin to become more established in your career it is only natural to begin to place your focus on your work. This causes you to accomplish more, find new and insightful ideas or perhaps even some exciting new methods that may increase your efficiency or productivity. Allowing your career to monopolize your time is also a great way to increase your stress.
Images of the high-powered executive type come to mind, with a keen eye and a sharp grasp on their success. These are also the same people that live and breathe their job, answering work related phone calls in the evening and sacrificing their personal time in order to to get further ahead. Perhaps you have friends that are like this, or maybe this description parallels with many of your own traits.
I’m not saying that placing emphasis on your career is a bad thing, because that couldn’t be further from the truth. However, there’s a difference between focusing on your job, and placing the right amount of focus on your job. Remember the old saying “you either live to work or work to live”? Which one applies to you?
Living to Work – It’s common knowledge that people who live to work experience higher levels of stress and stress related illnesses than people spend more time on an active and varied personal life. These people may also experience higher levels of professional success, fulfilling their goal current goal structure and allowing them to set new ones.
Working to Live – These people tend to enjoy a much more relaxed work life, content to work at a comfortable pace and accept whatever challenges that arise as they come along. They tend to lead more active social lives, and generally focus on accomplishing a wide variety of personal goals.
If you are finding it difficult to separate your work life from your home life you may find it beneficial to analyze how you’re going about it.
Determine Whether or Not You Want Them to be Separate – Some people decide that work and home must be separate, rather than coming to the understanding that it’s a personal choice. Some people, including myself, enjoy having a non-linear work environment. This means that I don’t have set work hours- some days I may finish work at 8 pm, other days I may be done by noon.
If you don’t actually want to separate the two environments, no amount of convincing will successfully accomplish it.
Analyze Your Work Space – If you have your office set up so that it is as homey as possible you may be sending your brain mixed messages. On one hand the brain recognizes that it’s at work, but on the other it sees conflicting images of home. Try keeping your work space professional and to the point, and save the homey nuances for what you’re at home.
Conversely, setting up your home to resemble your work space is likely to have the same effects.
If you are still unwillingly blending your home life with your work life, perhaps you are in need of a career or job change. After all, you manifest whatever results that you want.
7 thoughts on “Enjoy Your Life: Separate Work From Home!”
Good post Cameron.
I personally enjoy mixing the two. I use a Blackberry (crackberry) because it allows me to do so. I like doing personal things while still getting some work done.
The only problem is that others find it offensive sometimes. My significant other will often get upset if I answer an email or even bring it along when I’m out with her.
Any tips or suggestions on this?
The trouble with always carrying your work with you is that you begin to expect / demand it of others. “well I replied at 4am this morning, why didn’t you”.
If you’re a manager then this is generating an atmosphere of fear in the workplace and this is NOT conducive to good working practices.
As to finding it offensive – well yes. How many times have you been speaking to someone and they say “excuse me, let me just get my mobile?” – my children are taught not to interrupt conversations (as was I) and answering emails, or mobiles is just plain rude. And rude is offensive – and when out with your SO that’s just it – you are out with them, not your work.
I say time to get a life that excludes your dependency
I enjoy working throughout the day as well. As I’ve explained to my friends and family many times, “I don’t have set hours”. I work whenever it’s required, and I love it.
However, there are times when lines need to be drawn. I leave my work phone at home when I am going out for dinner with friends or family, when I’m participating in some kind of social activity, or when I have company over. Otherwise, it’s fair game.
Hope that helps
Sometimes its very difficult to draw a line. But indeed both actually support each other, job for life and life for job.
I think one needs to fine his dream job which he will enjoy doing, but at the same time he needs to have his own life beside his job. Especially if you have a family this is rather important.
Oh work to live all the time. If you can’t live what is the point in working?
@ Arstan – reality is always a kicker – how many folks find their ‘dream job’? What I think is more important is that folk take the right attitude into the job they do have – it’s amazing how your work/life balance begins to improve when you do that.
All very true points. One thing I’d like to add is that what often separates a “Dream job” from the “job from hell” is a few factors at work, not necessarily the job itself.