Posted in part time work, work-life balance

Working part time

I love my job. I have always found it interesting and challenging . It had come to the state where I was always feeling tired and couldn’t be bothered with a lot of things. All I was doing was my job and even though I did other things I was just getting worn out. I have always worked full time and have never thought of being part time but my health was deteriorating and my life was not very satisfying because I was tired all the time. So, I made a big decision to remedy this, took to my pen and paper and worked out how to live on a part time wage. It has been two months now . I have to think about what I can buy and whether I need it. I cannot just buy what I want. I have freed up time within the system so someone else can have a job. I sleep properly at night and I have started to be enthusiastic about what I do. I was talking to two other people who had arrived at the same conclusion as I did. We were all saying how we do our job better and with more thought and consideration because we are not strained or pushed to our limit. We are all competent and always have been. So the three of us have freed up enough time for more than one other person to get a full time job. We are all looking well and relaxed. My skin is better, I breathe better, I have more energy and I have plans! I have a good balance between interface and face time and I can get outside during the day. Being in the fresh air during the day has been a gift in my life. I can get things done. I don’t have to try and squash in repair people or shopping on top of an already chock full day. Going through winter will be the real test for me because I find winter hard. I cannot see myself going back full time because I have been feeling so well. My head works, I can exercise and I can see people during the week. Really see people. Have some great conversations. It is not always easy to make a big change, but I planned this one carefully.It was worth it.
Posted in happiness, slow living, wellbeing, work-life balance

Work as hard as you can

Recently I have been blogging a lot about work/life balance. It seems to be affecting a lot of people. Younger people are being stressed and strained by long hours and high demands at a time where they are building their lives and have young children.Some  of them have learned to work less or build up a set of skills so they can slide between jobs. Older people are being crush by a relentless system at a time when they need to slow down and spend more time handing over their skills and then developing a new set of skills so they can contribute as elders.Rushing and doing to much means nothing is thought through properly, systems are lumpy and create more strain because no one has the time to join the dots. It’s silly. Recently the best piece of advice I have received is to work hard at work , decide what time you are leaving and then leave, go home and live your own life. We need a life. We need our own things to do and develop because that also grows the world and makes our society rich. Just drudging and slaving is deadening and so we are not getting the best out of people.We need to wake up and think more sensibly.I don’t know why we can’t.
Posted in multitasking, slow living, Stress Management, work-life balance

Stop multitasking!

Stop multitasking! I mean it . Just stop doing yourself in and exhausting yourself. Stop trying to be at work, manage your child’s illness, work out where the dog is going to stay while you are away, answering the phone while you are filing papers and trying to work out what is for dinner tonight. Stop it. Now. Some people seem to take an incredible amount of pride in being over busy. They are driven and don’t notice because they have this competitive thing inside of them which says they have to do more and be better and on and on they go. Others try and keep up and the impact on all concerned can be devastating. I have made a conscious effort to do one thing at a time this year and to do each thing properly. It’s amazing, when you do that,  you realise what a trap this multitasking is, how frenetic life is and how frantic everyone is. They don’t have time, they don’t have energy and they keep pushing you off because they have something else to do. Or they are shoving it your way because they have too  much to do. Doing one thing at a time takes patience and practice I can tell you. There is a great post on the Upside Learning blog about how Peter Bregman of Harvard’s Business Review spent a week not multitasking and how he felt about it. Don’t just read the post, read the comment too because they say so much about our notion of multitasking. We need to stop it.
Posted in slow living, Stress Management, wellbeing, work-life balance

Simplify your life

Care2 is an amazing site. So amazing, I have put a link on this blog so I can get back there easily.It has a wealth of articles and information on wellbeing, sustainability and healthy living.Plenty to read, plenty of help and plenty of good ideas. I happened to read this one on simplifying your life and even though some of it might be obvious, there is a new take on all of this and besides, stating the obvious is sometimes what busy people need to hear because they  are so lost in the todo list swamp  they forget the basics of happy lifestyles.
Posted in holidays, slow living, Stress Management, work-life balance

Get away!

Get away. Just plan, pick yourself up and take yourself off somewhere different. It rejuvenates, renews, inspires and refreshes. For 3 years I haven’t been able to go anywhere because of family circumstance and I was just becoming swamped and lost. It wasn’t my family’s fault. Life just gets like that sometimes. So, now there has been a change again, and the change always comes, I have just gone away. It is the only way to reinvigorate yourself. I have had a day in another capital city which was quite an adventure because I have never just flown interstate for the day. It was on business, but it was such a change and so nice. Recently I have done 3 days interstate and 5 days interstate which were trips more in my control so I really had a chance to get out and look at what I wanted and form both trips I have come home totally refreshed and energised even though they were only short breaks. Before I would have thought it a waste of time to just go away for a few days. Not true, that is so not true. When you plant yourself elsewhere you are making it possible to see everything from a new angle, a fresh perspective. It’s the daily routine and expectation which drags you down. On this last trip there was an even better twist on this getting away. My dog has cancer so I didn’t want her booked in anywhere. I just happened to have a friend who has been housebound because of recent ill health who welcomed the chance to get away to my place when I made the suggestion. Ill health meant his finances were low, so taking a break at my place which is nice and comfortable, by the sea and has plenty of amenities was something which cheered him up immensely …plus he loved having my dog! House sitting for a few days was the perfect solution to his need for a get away. Everybody needs a break and you come back ready to do battle again!
Posted in LifeHack, managing stress, relaxation, slowing down, work-life balance

Taking it easy

LifeHack has a very good piece of writing about how to deal with stress before it deals with you. The writing is energetic and helpful. Plenty of tips to get you going. If you look around the rest of the site you will see that it is a site designed to help you see through the pressure and burden of everyday living. It is about keeping your head straight and on your shoulders. When everyone else is multitasking, racing around, doing this, doing that and being everso successful you forget that they too are driven and there will be consequences now or later down the track. You wouldn’t run a car the 6 000 kms from Perth to Sydney without stopping or expecting trouble if you pushed it that hard. You don’t expect a car to constantly take the rough terrain without some care and maintenance. Daily we push ourselves here there and everywhere. We have to be fast, rapid, efficient and smart and then wonder why we are tired and drained and cannot think. The cortisol ramps up in our systems and the lack of sleep kicks in. We are smart if we look after ourselves. We are smart if we put some sense into our lives and we are even smarter if we can get it all balanced and really feel well. Sometimes it is not until you stop you realise the harm you are doing yourself and then you feel your body repairing itself. Switching off takes time and looking after yourself takes practice.
Posted in control, happiness, slowing down, work-life balance

The International Institute of Not Doing Much

The International Institute of Not Doing Much is all about slowing down. it’s about getting away form the frenetic pace, it’s about my previous post of learning how to take your time. There is some good advice, some good reading and a wonderful sense of entitlement to the belief you have a right to feel happy, relaxed and in control. We created the stress. We need to uncreate it. The humour on this site really helps you to see it differently. The world will not fall apart if we slow down and do things properly and ENJOY doing things properly. Racing around and being overwhelmed all the time is not dignified.

Posted in control, slowing down, work-life balance

One thing at a time

It’s not easy in an ever demanding world to do one thing at a time. The constant pressure to be multitasking is very real. So stop it. Stop it at once. In the end you’ll feel the benefit if you concentrate on one thing at a time. Refuse to be led into trying to do everything at once. 
1. Step back and take a deep breath.
2. Focus on the one thing you are actually supposed to be doing and do it well.
3. Politely ignore the interruptions and requests to be sidetracked unless it is a genuine emergency.
4. Enjoy what you are doing. Take pleasure in it. Get it right and be pleased about it.
5. Smile. It’s amazing how easy it is to work if you are smiling. It is easy to deal with a phone call if you are smiling and it is easy to deal with others if you are smiling.
It takes practice because we have become driven. As soon as you step back and focus on one thing you will start to notice how stressed out and frenetic others are and how unreasonably demanding our world can be. You actually become more efficient and accomplish just as much this way. The difference is your state of mind and your sense of wellbeing. Start now. Do one thing and do it well.