Work Life Balance

I love my job.

I love the amazing opportunities I have to travel, work with great people, and create my own little identity within the cubicle world.  My company constantly places among the top 20 places to work in the US, and I’m definitely spoiled.  They give us gifts, awesome work life extras (gym, on-site day care, pharmacy, even car detailing), but lately I had felt myself really, really getting drawn in.  What I was doing was way overboard, added to the fact that May-July are huge travel months for me didn’t bode well. I found myself in a situation where I was spending what time I had at home, stressing and thinking (or emailing) about work.

From a recent Florida trip

But then…vacation happened.  Seven days of not being in the office.  Seven days of not feeling the need to be on my phone all the time, I didn’t open my laptop once, and I let the work I delegated actually stay delegated.  By the last few nights, I stopped grinding my teeth at night, slept great, and really took time to enjoy my people.

I know that busy seasons will always be busy, but this was a major wake up call for me.  As a people pleaser, I tend go far beyond what is necessary…at the expense of my work – life balance.  I need to be reminded that it isn’t worth it.  My career isn’t going anywhere, but I’m missing out on other things.  I had had to cancel several riding lessons, dinners with friends, and other things that I love.  It’s not my job’s fault, they support my personal life plenty, it is mine for not managing my priorities better.

Horse dress for the win.

So I’m updating my work life balance.  Back in lessons this week, back to being present for my family and friends, and back to myself.  I feel really good about this wake-up call and even better about my decision to stop being so neurotic about work.  And hey, maybe I’ll actually hit publish on the 5 drafted posts I never managed to complete.

I doubt the giraffe missed me, but I’m ready to ride!

It’s back to my normally scheduled horse topics next, but who else besides me gets badly wrapped up in their careers some times?

27 thoughts on “Work Life Balance

  1. It’s such a hard balance. Good perspective that some seasons are just busier. However… Focusing on family, friends and your sanity is never a bad decision. Most of us can be replaced easily in the office, not so much by the ones who love and need our attention outside of cube land.

  2. Great blog …lfe of an event planner but we do need to remind ourselves that we need to work to live not live to work.

    You’ve got this 😉

  3. Because my work and personal lives are so intertwined, I struggle A LOT with trying to balance the two. Friends text me about bringing them a pair of stirrup leathers when I get back from vacation, or idly ask me on a weekend if I can find them a purple show coat that won’t break the bank. My boss calls me while I’m visiting my family to ask if I’ll be available to work a show on the east coast next month. The store calls me on Saturday because they can’t remember where we keep the polo wraps and someone needs them RIGHT NOW. I get it, and generally don’t mind it, but every once in a while I wish I still had a job that was fairly boring that no one ever asked about haha.

    Good on you for adjusting your priorities!

  4. Totally get it. Once i moved to a supervisor role, my ability to leave the work (and palpitation causing stress) at the door has been harder. I work weekend nights, its totally screwed my social life (but made travel and shopping easier). My husband laughs cause he catches me in the closet checking work email. I try really hard to shut work out when im home, my kids, horses, family deserve it, and so do I.

  5. I really struggle with this, unfortunately. The new commute, working overnights, and working at the barn are seriously impacting the amount of time that I am able to spend at home, and I feel like I almost never have time to just relax.

  6. Raises hand here and waves it wildly! It’s tough. I’ve dropped lessons right now because I’m not able to be consistent enough to respect my trainer’s time. I’ll still get out and hack, which I’m happy enough with for now

  7. I also have really struggled with this, especially after getting promoted and managing a team. I find work thoughts creeping into my mind after 5pm, at times I never would have let that happen before. Prioritizing riding is a good move, for me it’s the only hour I know I won’t think about work at all.

    One other thing that really helped me was to get an email app with a VIP Inbox, so I have my direct subordinates’ and my boss’s emails set to always notify me at all times, but when I’m on PTO, all other emails don’t notify me at all (I get a ton from the sales teams that I just do not need to be dealing with while OOO) It’s really helped me actually unplug when I get out of the office while also not worrying that I won’t be there for my team if something really bad happens.

    • That’s a really good point – I am totally drawn in by the buzzing of my emails/little notifications, so separating those things would be really nice. I’m so impressed how well you seem to manage your time with Connor, and being a manger, AND your lovey house.

  8. Relating so hard. This has been a constantly shifting balance for me, and definitely one I struggle with sometimes. Good for you for having the awareness to recognize that you want to make a change!

  9. i totally get this. that work life balance is so hard – esp when the stress from work starts bleeding into other aspects of my life. and it’s reeeeeally hard to let go, and let things happen as they will without my direct supervision. i’m glad you had such a wonderful vacation tho – and that it helped you figure out what needs re-calibrating! good luck with the change!

  10. I’m not much of a career-oriented person, but balancing everything in life is TOUGH. You really do have to prioritize and it’s so easy to go down the rabbit hole and get suckered into prioritizing the wrong way. Glad to hear you’re getting back on track!

  11. I’m happy you’re finding better balance with work. A lot of the companies in my area offer those sorts of perks and claim they want you to have work-life balance, but really they just offer the perks because they want you to work all the time.

  12. ALL THE TIME. And I’m a freelance writer that works from home. I’ve found that during the busy weeks, I have to specifically schedule a few hours to go out to the barn. If it’s in my planner, I make sure to dedicate time to it. Not ideal but if it gets me a chance to ride during chaotic weeks, I’ll take it!

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