It's not about the money

Monday, August 10, 2015

When it comes to living, we all know the importance of money. While we want the spare cash to treat ourselves and live comfortably, we also want a life outside of work, and chase the "work-life balance". It can seem an endless journey though, with high paying jobs requiring long-hours and dedicated career focused employees, and those with a better lifestyle often only paying enough to cover the bills.

So the question is, do you work to live or live to work? So many of us will spend more time with our colleagues than family and friends, and save away our pennies with no time to use them.
I have a different mindset.

First, I love my job. I've worked hard to get where I am; I know what I want, how to get there, and how to continue "living" whilst working. Enjoying what you do has to be THE most important aspect of a career. It doesn't matter what you do, as long as you love it! Often people feel they need to chase a high flying career where the money will rain down upon them, but only then realise that they aren't happy. No matter what career path you choose, what type of job you take on, your values should guide you to employment which matches your values and makes you look forward to the working week.

My Monday-Friday view, not too shabby ;)
Second, set limits for yourself; know what you are capable of doing mentally, emotionally and physically and don't exceed that. We can easily fall into the trap of trying to impress our employers, by staying back late, working weekends, or cancelling plans. Although it is important for your employer to know you are dedicated, this shouldn't come at the expense of your social life, your family and friends, and your values. By focusing on the hours we work instead of the results we produce, we are really being inefficient and not making the best use of our time. If you measure success by the time spent in the office, you are really only cheating yourself and impacting on the rest of your life. By setting limits, and making compromises, we can be just as dedicated without negatively impacting our lives outside of work.

Third, have a goal outside of work that you strive for, and hobbies/activities which provide you with fulfilment. Clearly I love travelling, so I set myself a plan of where I want to go next, when I want to get there, and how I can make it happen! This is a longer term goal, so other than this I keep myself active by playing netball, taking my horse out for a ride, or hitting the gym. I also play the piano and make sure I catch up with friends at least once a week. These small gems of life in the short term make me happy about my life and my longer term travel goals give me something to aim for and look forward to. Having a great job is one thing, having a great life is another!

Of course this won't apply to everyone. We have all felt the pinch of money's woes, and had to work several jobs or take on more than we can chew just to make ends meet. But when you are ready and able to find a job that really makes you happy, remember that money isn't everything, your life is far more important - we only get one so go for gold first time round!

My motto in life is "live, love, laugh, travel and be healthy"! This is what I live by and I wholeheartedly believe in it.

Erica x

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