With the flu still sweeping through my office like the plague, it got me thinking: even without a physical fever, I've been feeling tired and stressed at work lately (as you may have noticed from the topics of recent posts), which has a negative ripple effect on all the other areas of my life. In a recent White Hot Truth article about our relationship to sleep, the author quotes the following message:
"Tiredness is a kind of sickness...It is not a matter of how long we sleep that determines whether we feel tired. It is waste and negative thoughts and actions that create tiredness. Create positive thoughts and elevated actions and you will take strength from that, and your tiredness will leave you." -Dadi Janki
It struck me that part of the reason I was feeling so tired was that I let work completely take over my life. I stopped doing things that gave me energy. Yes, work has been particularly busy and chaotic lately; but I have a choice in how I respond, and the more I let things that energize me fall out of my routine, the more tired I become, and the less able I am to perform high-quality work. It's not a good cycle or a place I want to operate from, and it sets the wrong example for the people around me.
As they say, the first step is admitting you have a problem. After coming to the conclusion that my work/life balance was completely out-of-whack (despite my recent post on prioritzation), I asked myself three key questions to uncover specific problem areas and brainstorm solutions.
3 Questions to take your "quality of life" temperature:
- What are the areas of my life that I've let slip?
- How healthy are my current habits?
- What can I do to replenish my energy and feel excited and happy with my day/week?
The last step toward improving your quality of life is commitment - choosing actions that you believe will improve your quality of life and allow you to feel healthy and energetic again.
10 Small Actions to Improve My Quality of Life:
- Exercise daily
- Get outside as often I can
- Drink more water
- Smile more
- Go to bed earlier, watch less TV
- Snooze less
- Engage in meaningful 1:1 conversations with people
- Multitask less. Focus on what I'm doing at the moment and enjoy it
- Take 3 deep breaths smack-dab in the middle of the day to slow me down when things get crazy
- Be nicer to myself.
Those are my quality of life improvements (I would like to note that they are working already!)...what are yours?