I know all of you are really busy with work, and and you probably feel like there are never enough hours in the day to get what you need to get done actually done while balancing your spouse, kids, dog, goldfish, sick parent, fill in the blank.
You likely have a daily/weekly must do and a would like to do list. I have both of those and unfortunately my would like to do list sits there uncrossed for months and gathering dust because something just has to give.
There are days when I can just respond to the high volume of emails I get each day – but I really try not to do that unless it’s a crisis situation – that alert at the bottom of my screen telling me I have a new email drives me absolutely crazy so that’s been turned off for a long time. I need time to think without interruption, which can be a luxury to get in a fast-paced environment where I work.
If you’re anything like me, you just wish you had more time to read over or edit a piece of your work and make it perfect – but you just can’t – and by the way, it will never be perfect! Because time is of the essence, and like I’ve said before, oftentimes, your good is good enough.
Here’s the thing – you can choose to not be busy some days and to go home from work and spend time with your family or just go to the gym. Whatever it is – your work will still be there in the morning. You owe it to yourself to be kinder to yourself and cut yourself some slack. I really believe that the more we have on our plates and the more stressed we are also makes us more creative about how to get it all done (and by the way, being chained to your desk 24/7 is not the most efficient way).
You must choose to be selfish sometimes so that you can have a personal life and also just for your overall mental well being. The worst thing you can do is to overextend yourself and burn out. You also don’t want to miss out on the really important moments with your family or worse, miss out on having a family completely because you were too busy working. How sad is that? Recently the legal industry media has put a much-needed spotlight on the fact that so many legal professionals are overworked and overstressed, which can lead to many health issues, and so self-care has never been more at the forefront and more important to discuss and address.
An industry friend who travels a lot for work and who is an introvert and needs quiet time at home alone recently asked me how to better balance his busy personal and professional life, and I told him that you just have to make time for those who are important to you. You must also set boundaries so you do not become consumed with work all the time. I used the example of how if our country’s top politicans can do it, so can we. For example, I always admired Barack Obama for the way he made his wife and children a priority and was a family man while having what is arguably the most important job in the world.
So for example, this Social Media Butterfly has started to spend less time on social media (gasp! Yes I just said that). I’ve also started doing less of the kinds of things that take me away from spending time with the people who are important to me. Simply put you just have to make time for what’s important to you, period. Don’t check your email for an evening. Turn your out of office on if you absolutely must. Actually use your vacation days. Go to your kids’ recitals and eat dinner with them as much as you can (and log back into your computer if you must after they go to bed). Set boundaries with your employer for how much you will be available on weekends and while on vacation.
That friend I mentioned above decided that self care was truly important to him and he took stock of what was in his life and all of the pressures he had (inlcuding a new long distance relationship that was causing him stress in terms of making the time for it), and he cleared out what wasn’t working for him and reorganized other things in order to find more time for himself. Unfortunately some things fell by the wayside in the process but he found clarity, greater purpose and happiness for him.
While this isn’t a social media post, it’s a post on self-care and a reminder to be kinder to yourself and to make time for what makes you truly happy in life.