Loving your job is hard. I hope for your sake you love your job, and if you do, that is something to hold near and dear. Liking your job is the land where most of us reside. Some days, I can't even get out of the car. Some days, it takes all my strength and will to get through the day. There are people who can relate. People with depression or anxiety, people who have no friends or comrades at their workplace. That is not the case for me. But it is hard. Some days.
I've devised a list of things to focus on in life that have literally NOTHING to do with working. We spend 8+ hours a day working and in this day and age, people are expected to work longer hours, be available 24/7 and grind so hard they burn out before they are 30.
Now for me, it is important to focus on those other 16 hours. Those precious 16 hours. Like many healthy people, I get approximately 7-8 hours of sleep every night. I love being in bed before 10pm and I wake up at about a quarter to six every day. That leaves us with about 8 hours. EIGHT HOURS! That's SO MUCH TIME! When you break it down, it is incredible the amount of "free time" we all have in a day. Now my days have routines of their own. Monday through Friday between 6am and 8am I am getting ready for work, eating breakfast and drinking coffee with my husband. The biggest space for open time is the evening.
I typically cook dinner in our household. I plan it out on my drive home from my job and cook almost immediately after I get home, because you know, I'm hungry. Here are about 4 hours per evening that I can use to focus on literally anything but my job.
Another sweet spot of time is my hour long lunch break! I use this lunchbreak to get OUT of the office. I sit at Starbucks and drink Black Tea Lemonades and I get in touch with some of my more creative outlets. I read, paint, write, journal. You name it. This is a great refresher in my day and helps make the afternoon hours fly by.
So let's get down to the nitty gritty shall we?
I said that I journal on lunch breaks and journaling has proven to be restorative. All the frustrations of morning hours are easily banged out in my journal. I do a literal brain dump. I put everything in my head, down on paper. This is a biggie in self-development and I find it super calming.
2) Read a Freakin' Book!
One of the most sought after New Years resolutions this year was to read more books. I have made it a major part of my life to start reading more books. I try to read at least 12 books a year. One a month. That's nothing! And you know what reading books has given to me? Man! I am good at talking to people about books. Talking to people about books, makes you sound smart! I love that impressive feeling. Look at the fancy lady who reads books! So old school! (kidding!)
3) Hand Letting / Calligraphy
Hand Lettering is quite cathartic. It has been a relaxing distraction when I'm most frustrated. There are a bunch of tutorials on Pinterest and all sorts of fun practice sheets and books you can buy. Once mastered, and by mastered I mean once you can sort of do it, you will super impress your friends and family! And that always feels good doesn't it?
4) Binge a Netflix Series
TV / Movie Binging is everyone's favorite pass-time AM I RIGHT?! Though this may not be always considered the healthiest habit to have, it is definitely a perfect activity when you just need to veg out and not think about anything. There have been plenty of days where the world is too much and people suck too much and you don't want to think about anything. BRING ON THE NETFLIX BINGE! Someday soon I will post my list of favorite Netflix binge items! Stay tuned!
5) BATH BOMBS!
Obviously bath bombs are not going to help you develop professionally or anything like that. But they are super fun, they smell good, and they make your skin nice! Wins all around! My favorite bath bombs are the Butter Bombs from Lush®! They are affordable, yummy, and they are SO MOISTURIZING!
6) Work out.... ya I know.
So who likes to work out. Like no one. I sure don't. But even though I am definitely not a fan of the thing known as physical fitness, I cannot deny the beneficial effects. Obviously there is the whole weight loss, look good feel good mantras. But there is also a stress relieving aspect to that fitness! It is guaranteed "me-time" and it is splendid. I have Beachbody OnDemand and love me a good yoga or Country Heat workout.
7) Arts and Crafts fo lyfe!
I am an artist at heart always have been always will be. Now I know this doesn't work for everyone. There are plenty of people out there that have not a creative bone in their bodies so if that is you, just skip this one haha! I love to paint most of all. I paint whenever I can and it is relaxing. It is important to find a skill that is unrelated to your work life so that you can fully detach and work on something selfishly for me. If you aren't artistic and you're still reading this, I challenge you to find SOMETHING that makes you feel good. And you do that!
8) Write a Blog
THE OBVIOUS ONE! If you're reading this blog you've probably read a million blogs that talk about self care and development. In all those blogs there has probably been a section about starting a blog. Now I have this blog, but I don't call myself a professional blogger by any means. I started this because I wanted to be a better person and writing about it makes it real.
9) Planting of the Things (Otherwise known as gardening)
My husband is all about the plants and yard work and gardening. He is the reason I am interested in all things outdoors and dirty. He's also the reason I LOVE to fish. But that is another matter. This summer we are planting a vegetable garden and I am so excited to grow my own produce! Also flowers are pretty.
10) Bullet Journaling
Now this one touches base on almost all the things that I've talked about today. In my bullet journal, I schedule my life, I make lists, I write what I want to put in my garden, I track my workouts, I track how I'm feeling, ANYTHING. I practice my handlettering in my bullet journal as well. Though this is a popular trend, it is also amazing. There are so many benefits to bullet journaling and I can honestly say it will probably change your life. Start! I also recommend some super sweet colorful pens just because, you know, it's fun!
So there you have it! Ten things you can do to better yourself and that have absolutely NOTHING to do with your day job.