Most people work long days and when they get home, instead of doing what makes them happy, they think about their job more, check work-related emails and respond to them, even when their business hours are over. Many people say that when they get home, they stop working, but research has shown that’s not entirely true. Namely, the American Psychological Association conducted a study which helped them find out that over 50 percent of people check their work-related emails when they’re not at work, even on weekends and holidays. The internet has its perks, of course, and it keeps us connected, but this availability often makes people feel that they need to answer work emails even when they’re not working. This increases their stress levels, and they actually don’t have any real time to rest and relax. This can be detrimental for health, as well as cognitive ability. In order to increase productivity, as well as create a proper work-life balance, you need to rest and separate work time from your personal time. There need to be some boundaries between the two, especially if you want to stay healthy and be happy. Your work may be important to you, and that is okay, but there are some things you should never sacrifice to a job.
1. Your sanity is one of those things. If your job is taking even a small portion of your sanity, it is probably not worth it. You need to set your own limits and make sure that you stay mentally healthy. If you don’t care about yourself, nobody will, and especially not your employer. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance can contribute to keeping your sanity. So, when you finish working (especially if your job is very difficult, but even if it’s not), rest, do the things you enjoy, and keep your mind off of work. Doing that and setting a clear boundary between work time and relaxing time will have a positive effect on your sanity and spiritual balance.
2. Your physical health is also very important and you should never think of it as less relevant than your job. If your job is causing you to lose sleep, sit all day and lead an inactive lifestyle, it’s time to make a change. It’s not your job – it’s you. You need to make yourself sleep enough, become physically active (at least to some extent) and stay consistent in caring about yourself. Don’t let work rob you of your health.
3. Your family is the most important thing most of us have, and yet we don’t always maintain good relationships with them and we blame the amount of work we have for that. You need to earn money to pay off debt, pay the bills, pay your kids’ schooling, etc. so you work all the time and don’t spend enough of it with your family? No amount of money or progress in your career is worth losing your family or damaging your relationship with them.
4. Your identity is a part of your personality – the thing that makes you who you really are. Our work is indeed a part of our identity, but bear in mind – A PART. Letting your work become your whole identity means losing your true self and not having an identity outside of work. In that case, you become emotionally unavailable, you’re unable to grow as a person or have fun. Stay true to yourself, and don’t let your identity get lost at work or out of it.
Sacrificing your integrity because your work required you to in order to achieve something may seem alright at the moment, but in the long run it will cause you to stop respecting yourself and you will have to deal with lots of stress. When you realize that you’re acting opposite to your beliefs, you’ll realize that a boss that asks you to do immoral or unethical things may not be the right boss for you. If a job causes you to have to sacrifice your integrity, and there is no other way to keep it – then don’t. Finding another job, as long as it can take, is easier than having to live with guilt or becoming a person you don’t want to be.