Helping the Chronically Overworked Find Life Balance

Four Ideas To Help You Get Your Life Back Starting Today

Chapter 8: Build Your Community Part 11

Over the last few posts, I have explained why it is dangerous to put all of your happiness eggs in the work basket: Lack of diversification is inherently risky.  Would you put all of your money in a single stock?  Any financial advisor would say you are crazy to do so.  Diversification is the key to a sound financial strategy.  The same holds true of your connections to other people.  Market forces beyond your control  can turn the most wonderful of workplaces into the stuff of nightmares.

If your time profile indicates the risk of corporate idolatry, I suggest that some life diversification is in order.  There is no need to say  “no” to the company – it will likely cause additional stress and may induce feelings of guilt.  Find something to say yes to, an activity that you decide is a higher priority than the company.  Here are a few suggestions:

1. Make a list of the things you liked to do when you were younger.  Is there anything you’d like to start again?

2. Join a class that a friend is taking.  At minimum you’ll get more time with the friend, and you might find something new that you really like.

3. If someone invites you to something, say yes!  (See this post on community opportunities.)

4. Put the new activity on the calendar – you will be far more likely to follow through if it is on the calendar.  One person told me her solution to a crazy time in the office was to sign up for 4 dance classes a week.  It gave her a “reason to get out of there.”

Sorry if you were expecting more earth-shattering ideas. It’s not complicated, just scary and hard to begin.  But once you start to connect with other people outside of work,  you will feel positive peer pressure to keep on connecting.

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