My life lessons post for today is a little more work heavy than I usually like to be, but there’s a reason for that! Over the past year or so, I’ve made a lot of changes to my daily routine that have bettered my work + life balance. I still have a long way to go when it comes to dealing with stress, but these five things have certainly helped leaps and bounds. So with that said, here they are :
GET SLEEP For awhile, I thought it was wrong of me to sleep in until 7:30. I knew that most working adults had to get up earlier than that in order to get ready + be on time to work. So in order to feel like I was “doing things right” ( whatever that means ), I would set my alarm clock, like most do, and wake up a zombie. That all fell apart one day when I said “screw it” and just woke up naturally. I’ve been doing it ever since and have found that my productivity ( and mood ) are much better when I get a good night’s sleep. May as well take advantage of it while I’m still young and can, right??
TURN OFF EMAIL SOUNDS This one may sound funny, but I’m certain that before I did this, my heart rate would dangerously spike every time I heard that email BEEP on my phone. It got to the point where it actually made me mad as I watched those red numbers crawl up. Not very healthy. So one day, when I must have reached my breaking point, I turned off all alerts … it was like this instant wave of relief fell over me. ( Seriously, do this. ) Now, I can run errands and eat lunch in peace. I may even dare to say that this was the best thing I did for my working self this year.
BREAKS ARE GOOD I used to think that I couldn’t take long breaks until I finished all important work. It was this nagging “bad cop” in my head that told me breaks would feel better if I had everything completed. The truth, though, is that breaks are GREAT for creatives! It allows us to step away from our work and come back refreshed. Now, I don’t feel so bad stepping away for an hour to get some cleaning done, cook up a tasty lunch, or watch the Ellen show. Working naturally is just fine – – as long as you always keep up in the end.
TAKE WEEKENDS OFF When I first started freelancing, I would work 15 hour days and often hunker down in my room on the weekends, too. It was a constant stream of pushing my business forward in order to succeed and prove to others I could do it. It was a tough time, but once my work was more steady and comfortable, I implemented a simple rule : no working on the weekends. The most I will ever do is answer a few emails from my phone, but that’s it. Typically, I don’t even step foot in my office – and I can’t even begin to tell you HOW GOOD that feels. Please, try it. Weekends are for you.
YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE EVERYONE ELSE A lot of people have brought this up lately, but it’s something I ( and I think a lot of people ) struggle with each and every day. Because we live within such a visually active world, it’s very easy to compare ourselves to others. From new business ventures to beautiful studios and homes, it’s hard not to want it all. I have to remind myself often that what I’m seeing is mostly a highlight reel. As long as I feel good about what I’m putting out in the world and am kind to others, that’s what it’s all about. We all have our own path … enjoy it. :)