7 Things to Consider When Balancing Work and Life!
Updated: Aug 16
Working as a small business counselor, I have encountered various types of entrepreneurs and people. Regardless of the demographics, personal backgrounds, type of business, etc. the thing that I found to be a common thread is the desire to provide a better life for themselves and/ or their families. I would stare in admiration the lengths that they have gone to try to secure a better future, and would also be honored that they sought me for that extra push that they were needing. However, I did find myself “preaching” to some of them that they needed to slow down or detract some of the things that they were involving themselves in. Sometimes our quest for more leads us down an endless bridge; I have compiled a list of seven things you should consider to evaluate whether or not you are adding to your value or simply overwhelming yourself.
1. You need the supplemental income, and can devote the necessary time to acquire it?
Many people apply for part-time work to help with bills and/or to allow them to have a bit more flexibility in their monies. Whatever your reasoning it is best to know upfront the sacrifices that will be inevitable; such as, less sleep, less family time, less free time, possibly more strenuous, and so forth.
2. You have the support of your family?
A support system is crucial when embarking on new endeavors. Navigating treacherous and unknown territories alone can be intimidating and dangerous, but having someone that can serve as your buffer and/ or motivator is priceless. There will be times that will require to dig deep in order to keep pushing forward and to know that you have the support of a loved one often times get us over that hump. We are more likely to take risks when we know that we have something and someone to fall back on.
3. You know the money is not always greener?
Taking on part-time work to push yourself into the next tax bracket, sometimes is not realistic. Many part-time jobs begin at minimum wage or no more than $5/ hr more; therefore, balancing an additional 20 hours with a 40 or more hour work week is not always worth it for an additional $200 paycheck. It is best to do your research beforehand so that you are not going into it with expectations that will never be met. Sometimes your mental and physical health is not worth sacrificing for an additional paycheck.
4. You are doing something that you love?
I am sure we have all heard the saying, “do something you love and you will never work a day in your life!” It sounds too good to be true, but this can sometimes actually be the case. If you are passionate about something and you are in a healthy environment that will continue to cultivate and encourage that love, then it may not feel like "work." You will be expanding your skills and resume while enjoying a personal hobby. When the workday gets tough or the boss becomes a pain, you will be reminded by your passion as to why you clock in and report to work on a daily basis.
5. You know your purpose for embarking on this endeavor?
Whether it is to have extra income, broaden your career options, diversify your portfolio, to try your hand at a different trade, it is important that you know what your reasoning is. Getting another job just because will have you closer to the side of turnover than you know. With clear intentions, you may never be satisfied or you will constantly take other opportunities that you think will help push you towards whatever it is that you want to accomplish.
6. You have carved out alone time to spend with loved ones?
As mentioned at the beginning of the article, many people take on extra jobs because they want to be able to “better” provide for their families. However, if you are sacrificing them in the meantime they may not care about the intent, because time cannot be replaced nor reversed. Remember to make time for the now; we can sometimes lose focus because we are fixated on our long-term aspirations and materialistic gain.
7. You have a way(s) of “winding down” after a long day?
No matter how much you enjoy doing what you do, it is important that you carve out time for yourself. Whether that is with a chilled glass of wine, binge-watching a television show, working out, or a bubble bath it is very important that you have a way of detoxing yourself from the day. Working extended hours can quickly become burdensome if you do not detach yourself from the workday and enjoy some of the perks of having that additional income source.
No job or amount of money is worth your health, sanity or family. As the good Book says "for what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, but lose his soul (Mark 8:36)?" However, there are times when we have to lose a few immediate pleasures to put ourselves in better situations, but ultimately that is for you to decide.