How to Keep Personal Growth Going with a Hectic Work Life
It’s 8 pm on Friday and you’re still at the office, hurrying to get those last projects submitted before the weekend rolls around. Then you go home. You barely have any energy to eat, let alone cook a nice meal for yourself. All you want to do is chill in front of the TV until you fall asleep, and you don’t see the weekend going much differently.
How did it come to that? Where did all the motivation for learning new things and bettering yourself go? It seems like many people find themselves stuck in a perpetual loop of investing all of their available time into work once things pick up with their careers, and it’s easy to see the days turn into weeks and then months and let it all slip by.
But the truth is that it’s rarely anybody’s fault but your own. Finding yourself in this situation can usually be traced back to one thing: becoming too comfortable with investing all your effort into your career on a regular basis. If you want to escape that vicious cycle, you have to make it point to find some things in your life that can make your days more meaningful.
Everyone Needs a Hobby
It doesn’t matter what kind of personality you have, even if you’re the biggest workaholic you know, you still need something that you can lose yourself in that’s completely unrelated to your main line of work. There are many opportunities for that, especially today – but one piece of advice we can give you in this regard is to try to separate yourself from your traditional working environment as much as possible. If you work in front of a computer all day long, don’t pick something like digital art or music production for your new hobby! Try something on the opposite end of the spectrum, like a new sport or perhaps a more social activity like a book club.
Many hobbies naturally lend themselves to creativity, but that’s not a hard requirement for the activity to be fulfilling. Something like exploring the woods around your home can be a great combination of sports with a little mental exercise. Or, you can take it one step further and see if there’s an active urban exploration community in your area.
You’re Never Too Old for a New Language
Learning languages is not just useful, it’s simply fun and a great way to challenge yourself on a daily basis. Many people seem to have the wrong idea about the accessibility of this kind of thing though, thinking that after they’ve passed some “magical” date, there’s no longer any point in even trying to learn a new language. And yet there’s no shortage of stories of people who’re still learning something new even in their 60s and over, and they’re doing it just for fun!
Research has also shown that learning languages can be beneficial for your mental health in the long run, forcing your brain to operate in ways it’s not used to and keeping it “fresh”. That’s not to say that learning a new language every few years is a guarantee that you’ll have a snappy mind in your senior years, but it’s very likely that you’ll be noticeably brighter than your peers, at least those who didn’t spend their time as wisely as you.
That’s not even touching on the fantastic opportunities you’ll get for exploring the world. Taking a trip to an unfamiliar country becomes significantly less scary when you can communicate in the local language. Study a language and you’ll suddenly find a number of popular tourist locations to be a piece of cake to navigate, not to mention avoiding the tons of tourist traps you’ll run into. Sites like educations.com can help you get started and set you up with the right kind of program to follow, for example, if you want to study Spanish, and once you’ve taken the first few steps, you’ll find it easy to acquire additional skills on your own.
Make Room for Mindfulness
More and more research keeps showing that mindfulness can have a huge positive impact on a person’s life if practiced regularly. Meditation is not difficult to learn at all, and all you need to do is set aside some short period of time in your daily life – even 15 minutes will do – and just focus on the present moment. You will get distracted, but that’s the point – just keep coming back to your meditation session every time you catch yourself slipping away.
Many people who’ve never tried mindfulness meditation consider its benefits to be a placebo at best, but those who’ve integrated it into their lives will readily tell you that they probably can’t imagine living without this kind of help. Getting used to the idea of living in the present moment and letting go of your regrets for the past and worries about the future is one of the best things you can do to improve your daily wellbeing.
And ironically, the people who need this the most are usually also the ones who ignore it the most. Those with a hectic, busy lifestyle that drowns them in work and chores usually find their lives completely transformed after just a few successful sessions. Unfortunately, many of them don’t even find the time to get started. It’s sad as a large number of people out there are living far below their potential because of that.
Do You Actually Like Your Job?
It’s a cliché to say that nobody really likes their job, and it’s unfortunate that this has become such an established notion in our society. Think about it – does the idea of spending the next 40-50 years of your life dedicating your time to something you not only have no interest in but actively dislike, actually seem appealing to you? Finding a line of work that brings you a personal sense of satisfaction is not impossible, but it does take some effort.
You have to make it a point to keep searching and not just jump at the first opportunity that comes your way. And when you’re in a difficult financial situation or have other issues looming over your head, this can seem easier said than done. But if you want to set yourself up in a way that you won’t regret the decisions you’ve made when you hit retirement age, you’re going to need to get through some difficult moments now and endure them as best as you can.
The good news is that as long as you do everything else we described above and know how to keep improving yourself as a person and growing in the right direction, you shouldn’t feel too stressed out from that whole experience. In fact, even the negative events around you will seem far less stressful when you know how to deal with every hit that comes your way. And it doesn’t take that much effort to get there – you just have to make it a point to use the time you’ve been given and grow as a person every single day. Once you’ve decided on that, few things can get in your way and stop you, and you’ll feel like the whole world is conspiring to help you push through it all.