I’ve been thinking about how I take care of myself, which makes this article my wife shared with me quite timely!
Basically millenials, those of us in the 22 to 38 age range, are burning out. This is because we are trying to do everything just like our parents did. But the current economical and financial landscape is an obstacle to that. The cost of living has outpaced pay rises and I won’t even start on the change in house prices.
If we face reality as it is rather than what we want it to be, we cannot run our lives in the same way that our parents did.
One thing that we’re learning now is that the increase in productivity we have seen in the workplace does not translate into more free time. This is because the more productive you can be in less time, the further ahead you can get. If a company can perform at the same level as it did 10 years ago in half the time, that means they gain an advantage by keeping working hours the same. And so that is the reality, the more productive you are… the more productive you are. You don’t gain back much, if anything.
Of course, everyone is doing it and every company is doing it, so there is no edge any more. And being switched on all the time is damaging our health.
I’ve burned myself out a couple of times but I am beginning to recognise the signs and take steps to relieve the pressure. I’m also getting a lot better at taking time to be good to myself and not feeling guilty over it.
Yesterday was a perfect rest day.
I had a lie in and then breakfast, cuddles and just chatting with my wife for a while. A very indulgent takeaway lunch, where we both overate but it was so good that we didn’t care. Then we napped!
The rest of the day we went for a little walk to the local book shop, had a little browse and picked up a couple of books. In the evening we were still so full from that indulgent lunch that we only snacked for dinner. Then we played Carcasonne which has very quickly turned into our new favourite boardgame.
I’m sure I’m missing something out, but that’s the main stuff I remember and you know what, none of it was work, career or study related. Just two people enjoying life together for a whole day.
Today I felt great and even started studying one of the more difficult subject on my degree, Linear Algebra. I feel more sure than ever that I am going to do well on this degree and I’m also more confident about my career abilities.
Sometimes the best thing you can do to get ahead is to stop and enjoy where you are right now. I’m going to do it more often.