Isn’t it crazy how we have to force ourselves to stop working and take time out for ourselves? I’m the first to admit I love to work, and when your job is also your passion, it’s sometimes difficult to separate work life from ‘real life’, so to speak. And I’ve said it before – for anyone that works from home, that line is even more blurred.
Last week I said I planned on taking a break from work, and this week I did just that. I took the whole week off and gave myself a pass to lay in bed until midday, lull around in my pants, and do what I wanted when I wanted to. I usually start working at 7am, and my weekend lie in is often interrupted by Toby stomping around and wanting to go to the bathroom (if that was my boyfriend, I would have exiled him to the spare room by now…). So I know annual leave is something we all love, but I just found this week so refreshing that it really made me think about the things I do on a day-to-day basis and how I can change them up.
Do you ever just feel like you’re on a carousel, doing the same things at the same time every day? Breaking my routine made me realise I’m so guilty of just that, and going forward its something I want to change – because I feel like I’m so set on doing the same things in the same order all the time. Am I alone here? I feel like I can’t be… someone back me up! Anyway, that’s going to be my new thing going forward – to just go with the flow and not be bound by my own rules. Because really, there’s no fun in rules…
I think if stepping back taught me anything else, it’s also that I think we put way too much pressure on themselves to be successful and prove themselves at an early stage. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that’s a bad thing, but I think having social media and the Internet in our pockets all the time means we’re kind of always in ‘work mode’, and switching off doesn’t really distance us completely from that objective. Keeping up a public persona can be difficult sometimes, and even though working as a journalist and building a blog is kind of public, I feel like there’s a point where we should all put down the phones, tune out from the online world, and just relax.
Maybe it’s because I live in a city where everyone seems to be working all the time too – I don’t know. But I think going from university – where, let’s be honest, the workload is minimal – to working full-time is quite a leap, and I’ve noticed that especially this summer where, for the first time, I haven’t had months of free time to do what I want to do and recharge my batteries. It’s quite major, actually. In fact, leaving university is the first time since birth, really, that we have to commit to something and turn up every day, fully aware, for 8 hours every day. Just writing that is scary.
I think that’s what prompted me to write about mindfulness this week, and it’s definitely something else I want to work on – allocating ‘work time’ and ‘me time’, and sticking to those boundaries. It’s been so refreshing though, and I’ve enjoyed catching up with friends I’ve neglected (oops sorry) and just pigging out on the sofa with pizza, wine, and creepy Netflix documentaries about Area 51. What could be better?
So that’s my goal – to not be working 24/7, and to switch off from my daily tasks and give my time and attention to things that really matter. I mean, I fully expect to cave after 3 days, but I think it’s worth the effort…