Well what a busy few weeks. It’s the time of year I dread. A few short trips for work (sometimes the worst ones as in and out in 24 hours and I hate airports for those flying visits – no pun intended) & its Renewal season. Or silly season as I like to call it. From May until the beginning of July work takes over everything. Literally. So this year I decided it wasn’t going to….
Why I hear you ask, it’s only for a few weeks and you love your job. Yes, I do usually. This is no normal year for my Industry. Depressed Oil Prices means pressure on the cost of Insurance (my bit) and a real slow down in the whole Industry. It’s been 18 months and shows no signs of changing anytime soon. Which leads to desperate behaviours, stressed and grumpy people all around me. However when times get tough you learn a lot about people. Maybe that’s why I wasn’t really loving my job.
So I decided to take back control. Make time for friends and family. Look after myself more. Get the balance right for once.
First thing – stop turning down invites for things. Time to spend less time at work and more time with friends.
Second – go home more! No, not in the dirty stop out kinda way but in get back to my beautiful home in Kent more. I’m happy there. Comfy. Content. So why am I not there that often? Well basically I have no willpower to leave work on the dot, always finding a reason to stay. I am a control freak, so it’s all my fault, but it has to stop. I was working right through to 8/9/10pm, knowing I only had a 20 minute walk to the flat during the week. There was the problem- the flat. Now, don’t get me wrong I love my flat – stunning interior, slap bang in the heart of Bermondsey, extremely convenient. But it’s just not me to live in a flat or in town. Been there and done that. I realised I didn’t like it, so I would work late or go out – it was too easy. It’s turned into a glorified hotel room. A bloody expensive one!
After much thinking I’ve made the leap and moved lock, stock and barrel to Kent. I’m a commuter again. Yes it takes an hour and a half. But that’s an hour of work, with some chill out time. Or its a nap, a G&T (Fridays only of course) or just time to think. Something I haven’t had for a long time.
So how’s it going I hear you ask? It’s been 3 weeks and it feels great. Ironically I have more energy as I am sleeping better and my diet has dramatically improved. As I’m home now each night I can plan and prepare my meals at the weekend, so when I walk in the door I know what’s for dinner whereas when you work late or I was at the flat I wouldn’t be bothered to cook properly, and would snack mainly. My bad I know, but exhaustion can and does make you lazy! I also have the time now to exercise twice during the week instead of just a token run at the weekend (if at all).
The other bonus is that I am home earlier than staying in town. Why? I leave on time. I’m out the door like Boris escaping the Conservatives. It doesn’t mean I work a lot less, I get a good hour done on the train with no interruptions- some of my best work if I do say so myself! If needed I log on at home too. No longer will I play the martyr sitting in the office being visible to ‘prove I’m hard working’. What a load of old cods wallop. (Great phrase that, must use more!)
Now I realise none of this is rocket science, with many of you shouting hallelujah after trying to tell me time and time again to slow down. As we all know I’m a stubborn one, got to work it out myself! Too independent sometimes….
All this leads to one thing- Happy Al. Calm Al. It may have taken me a while to figure this life/work balance thing & I’m sure it will have its moments in deepest Winter (although this flipping weather hasn’t exactly been Summer) but I’ll take the rough for the lovely benefits of the seaside. My Instagram will keep everyone up to date too (alsadventuresuk)
Wish me luck! Especially with Southeastern trains…. And hope to see you all soon.