Hello again, and welcome to Big Dreams. I hope you are doing well this year, this month, as you read this article. I just upgraded from Joomla version 1.x to 1.5, and it took some time to get it all working again. I managed to migrate the content over, no trouble, but the comments didn't make it. I am not too worried. It means the slate is wiped clean, and ready for you to add new comments. Today's column is on working less and living a more balanced life.

Recently, I have been reading books on the topic of working less, and enjoying life more. I used to work in a high paced corporate job, and that took up much of my time. Before that I worked in consulting and business coaching, and that took up even more time, since weekends do not exist in that kind of work. Now as I get older, I learned that if I work all the times I could, then I would die without having any life. Dr Wayne Dyer said that if you define yourself by what you do, then when you don't you aren't. In other words, I do work but I am more than that. I refuse to limit myself to what I do for a living.

Me, having a life outside of working

I have one of those audio programs on stress management, which is quite good, and it says something along the lines of do what you love to do, follow your passion. If you live a miserable life, it does you no good, and will likely end your life sooner. Remember that the corporate world will not erect a statue to you for working yourself to death. In the words of Dilbert, "When you see bright lights and hear dead relatives calling, ease off a bit."

I think the politically correct term these days is work-life balance. It changes every few years, and I have been around to see it in a few incarnations. So if you are the sort of person to add a comment below this article, tell me how you feel you are doing with respect to balancing your work with the rest of your life?

Myself, I like to make things out of wood as a hobby. You know, like furniture, and boxes. There is something of a spiritual connection I get in creating something beautiful (at least to me). Often I like to work with hand tools rather than power, as then it is even more enjoyable. I am not incredibly good at it, and I am happy to point out flaws in a piece, but I have fun doing it, which is what is important to me.

Box Another box

A couple of boxes I made recently

I also like cycling and kayaking, although the weather and colds & flu have made it harder to do at this time. The more fun stuff I do, the happier I am. You need to find out what you like to do, and do more of it. It will give you the balance you need, and the rest of your life will improve too.


P.S. Here are some of the books I've been reading:

  • The Joy of Not Working, Ernie J. Zelinski
  • Career Success Without A Real Job, Ernie J. Zelinski
  • The 4-Hour Workweek, Timothy Ferriss
  • The Unemployed Millionaire, Matt Morris