It has been a very busy time for me professionally, perhaps for you as well. Certainly it seems as though people in the Bay Area are moving faster and faster with less time to relax. After working with a number of tech professionals at companies which talk about the importance of a work life balance, I have come to the conclusion that what this means in practice is that life shouldn’t take up too much time…
I reflected on this change yesterday when I was sitting with one of my twenty-something patients and I noticed that it has become routine for my patients to pick up their phone and answer email or text messages while I am writing out prescriptions. We no longer want to waste a couple of minutes.
So at the end of the day we come home with a high level of stress.
Perhaps it is not surprising that it is increasingly difficult to make the transition from that quick paced work mind state into a sense of relaxation and contentment which is what we most desperately wish for when were at home.
This morning I spent some time reflecting on this issue with a young woman who is embarking on a career in interior design and has been noticing how tired she is all the time and how difficult it is to really feel relaxed.
I propose to her that she consider an experiment: try doing a number of different short activities as a way of transitioning from work to home. Some examples include: a brief mindfulness practice, knitting, drinking a cold nonalcoholic beverage while sitting outside, gentle activity or yoga, etc.
Try it yourself and I think that you will find that by taking a few minutes for a conscious activity to mark the transition from one state of mind to another you will have a much more satisfying evening at home and be more rested for tomorrow’s struggle.