As you begin to become more established in your career it is only natural to begin to place your focus on your work. This causes you to accomplish more, find new and insightful ideas or perhaps even some exciting new methods that may increase your efficiency or productivity. Allowing your career to monopolize your time is also a great way to increase your stress.
Images of the high-powered executive type come to mind, with a keen eye and a sharp grasp on their success. These are also the same people that live and breathe their job, answering work related phone calls in the evening and sacrificing their personal time in order to to get further ahead. Perhaps you have friends that are like this, or maybe this description parallels with many of your own traits.
I’m not saying that placing emphasis on your career is a bad thing, because that couldn’t be further from the truth. However, there’s a difference between focusing on your job, and placing the right amount of focus on your job. Remember the old saying “you either live to work or work to live”? Which one applies to you?
Living to Work - It’s common knowledge that people who live to work experience higher levels of stress and stress related illnesses than people spend more time on an active and varied personal life. These people may also experience higher levels of professional success, fulfilling their goal current goal structure and allowing them to set new ones.
Working to Live – These people tend to enjoy a much more relaxed work life, content to work at a comfortable pace and accept whatever challenges that arise as they come along. They tend to lead more active social lives, and generally focus on accomplishing a wide variety of personal goals.
If you are finding it difficult to separate your work life from your home life you may find it beneficial to analyze how you’re going about it.
Determine Whether or Not You Want Them to be Separate – Some people decide that work and home must be separate, rather than coming to the understanding that it’s a personal choice. Some people, including myself, enjoy having a non-linear work environment. This means that I don’t have set work hours- some days I may finish work at 8 pm, other days I may be done by noon.
If you don’t actually want to separate the two environments, no amount of convincing will successfully accomplish it.
Analyze Your Work Space – If you have your office set up so that it is as homey as possible you may be sending your brain mixed messages. On one hand the brain recognizes that it’s at work, but on the other it sees conflicting images of home. Try keeping your work space professional and to the point, and save the homey nuances for what you’re at home.
Conversely, setting up your home to resemble your work space is likely to have the same effects.
If you are still unwillingly blending your home life with your work life, perhaps you are in need of a career or job change. After all, you manifest whatever results that you want.