Just Mark the Line

September 7, 2007 at 9:21 am Leave a comment

It’s Friday, what better day to touch on the topic of taking time for yourself?

Fact… North American workers take, and are allowed, far less vacation time than the vast majority of other countries. Face it, we’re nearly all workaholics. And when we do take time away from work, we bring it with us. We’ve allowed ‘work’ to invade every corner of our lives.

If the phone rings while we’re in the smallest room of the house? Not a problem – we’ll answer it. No place is private, no action uninterruptable by the boss, or whoever has access to our number. We’re wired – and we’re tired. We’re sleep deprived and stressed beyond reason. It’s time to slow down, or crash. There’s no need for me to provide links for all of these statements of fact – there are too many surveys and studies to choose from. Just hit google with a few relevant words and it’ll all pounce to your screen.

There’s no point asking companies to change their culture – they won’t – less work will eat into their profits – so scratch that idea.

No point getting the Govt to shorten the work week – we’d ignore it – do you currently work 40 hours a week? Official dictate is not the answer.

The answer to this problem, like most other problems is to take individual action and that requires self-discipline.

Here’s the most important tool for regaining your life… a line on a piece of paper.

That’s it… there’s not much else to it. It’s the end of the week, all the really big, impressive ideas went to other projects. All I have left for you is a single straight line on a piece of paper.

Here’s what you do. The length of the line represents the 24 hours in a typical day. All you have to do is place a single mark on that line to represent how much time you’ll focus your attention on work, and how much you’ll devote to life, yourself, your family, friends… you get the picture.

All you have to do is pick up a pencil and mark the line. This much for them, and what is left is for you. Easy.

Take your time. (no pun intended) There’s no rush.

Well… truth be told there is – there’s another line in our life – thing is – we don’t know how long it is – all we know is that we’ve used up some portion of it. The rest is an unknown. For some readers it might be a few seconds or a few years, for others? It might be decades away.

So? Mark the first line. Then devise a plan to make it happen. How much for them? How much for you?

You can start by turning off the cell phone this weekend. You’re not available. Tell them you’re busying practicing your lines.

Enjoy the weekend.


Entry filed under: Life, Life Balance, Management, Managing, Problem Solving, Time Management.

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September 2007
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