Yesterday, on May Day, I came across this photo on a friend's facebook page:
It reminded me that people struggled, fought, and protested over work-life balance. Some even died. We should be thankful that unions fought so hard for a shorter work day and increased labor rights. And part of being thankful for their work is to continue that work; to continue to fight for fair labor laws, the right to unionize, and work-life balance.
Surprisingly, even with my stellar math skills (ha!), I had never thought of my day as being broken down into three, eight hour sections. I've only had a 9-5 job for less than a year, and after my grad student schedule of endless days in libraries and frequent all-nighters, I've struggled to adjust. There are many days when I feel like work is all I have time for. I seem to get nothing done in the evenings after work. And I don't even have kids!
For whatever reason, looking at my day as 8+8+8 helps me. Instead of thinking that work is my day, and that I can maybe just squeeze in a few other things after hours, it helps me visualize it differently. I suspect that thinking I have eight hours of work, eight hours of life, and eight hours of sleep will help me organize my day differently and get more done, not just after work but during work. It also might help the dramatic tendency I have to feel like I'm somehow letting life pass me by while I'm at work (even though I love my job and need the money for, you know, food).
Do you think of life as 8+8+8? Do you have any tips for getting things done after the work day?