Happiness and Work-Life Balance.
How to find fulfillment at home while managing your career.
The pursuit of happiness is at the basis of American life and everyone strives to find that perfect level on both sides of the scale. Once you make enough money to cover your needs, the amount of money you make affects your level of happiness very little. So, what does make people happy? In this article I will go over how you can be successful in balancing work home life.
Connecting with people makes us happy and we see this through the emergence of social networks which still dominate the internet. Since we spend more time at work than we do at home, it is important to build friendships at work and not just focus on finding mentors. Friends help to share the workload and reduce stress. Everyone knows all of the negative effects of long term stress, so dealing with work related stress is important. Having friends at work helps to reduce stress and less stress means more time working on your career goals.
Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
“Karōshi“ is the term for work related suicides and death in Japan. They have so many work related suicides and deaths that they actually created a term for it. This sounds crazy to me! Luckily, where I work, the situation isn’t so dire, but stress is a problem in all workplaces.
Bhutan focuses on Gross National Happiness (GNH). Every decision made first questions how happy it will make the population. How would your life be different if you first focused on how a decision would affect your happiness? I’m sure if we all focused on how our happiness would be affected, then our decisions would be completely different.
We only get so many trips around the sun, so we should always maximize our time and be happy at home and at work. In the end your personality style should radiate happiness in all aspects of your life.
I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.-Groucho Marx
Connecting with people makes us happy, not grinding away at work and neglecting our family and friends. Does working twelve hours a day, every day, week after week, increase your happiness? I certainly don’t think it does, at least not for me. While at work, we should nurture our working relationships, however, family and friends are at the root of our happiness. Having a flexible work schedule that allows time to be with our loved ones is critical. I truly believe that Americans need to stick with a forty hour work week, a little overtime here and there is fine, but it should be the exception. Productivity needs to be balanced with non-work time to help recharge the batteries. This time away from work makes us happier because we can do the things that are taken away from us by long hours in the office. By the way, studies show time after time that happy people are more productive. Happy=Productive? What genius did it take to figure that one out?
Take this with you.
Cultivate happiness by balancing your work and home life and you will experience less stress and that will roll over to more productivity at work. Physical play, laughing, new experiences, friends and family will make you happy in the long run, so make sure to put these at the top of the agenda.
So take a true vacation; not just a three day weekend, but a real adventure to some place you’ve dreamed of going to. Turn off the cell phone and computer and completely go off the grid. You will be amazed at how effective this can be in reducing stress.
Your problems will still be there, but they don’t need you all the time, all of the day. Try surfing, hiking, or take a bike ride. Heck, try anything that will take you out of your comfort zone and conquer some long-held fears while you are at it. Overcome something today!
Even spending time outside around a campfire just talking to your family and friends is a great way to connect! Focus on enjoying life. As the old saying goes, nobody on their death bed every said they wished they spent more time at work.
I’d love to hear what you think about balancing work home life! Please feel free to leave a comment below and join the conversation. If you have any questions just leave them below and we’ll make sure to say ‘hi’ as we all meet on the ladder to success!