I recently finished the super-fun 31 Day Fabulous Fall Email Challenge – every day subscribers received a quick, simple tip on how to feel fabulous and manage their stress during the Holiday season. It was a great success! I received such a great response that I am now creating an E-book with all of that helpful content (and more!) that should be out later this month.
Anyways, writing this content has made me think a lot about my own life and how I manage everything. Much of the content was inspired by things that I do to manage my stress. I have a tendency to be all or nothing, so I have to constantly work at maintaining balance in all aspects of my life.
Ever since I started my own business, I have noticed one BIG component has changed: my social interaction. I am an extrovert and I love being around people – which is one of the big reasons I chose the field of psychology in the first place. Once I began working from home I saw my social interaction decline drastically and I quickly realized how important it is for me to see my friends and maintain my social life.
Check out what happened in 2014:
From January to May, I worked full-time at a university counseling center, taught 3 yoga classes a week, was taking a graduate course on Group Counseling for my license, was enrolled in an online business course, and was in one of my best friend’s weddings. I was essentially around people 24/7 and busy 7 days a week.
I am actually exhausted just reading that!
I had way too much going on (which again is my tendency) and had nowhere near enough quiet, private time. I knew when I was getting TOO much social interaction, because I would get really agitated and cranky very easily. People began to really annoy me rather than energize me. Extroverts love people, but every extrovert still NEEDS alone time. I was really burnt out by May and my health was suffering as a result.
I was just too freaking busy.
Once my contract ended at my University job in June, I hit a huge fork in the road: I had the choice to either apply for the new position they were advertising, or go full time with my business. I chose the latter. I took it even a step further and dropped my public yoga classes, deciding to focus just on my own practice for awhile instead. I finished my job in June and took a break for about a month to recover. And then in July, I began the life of an entrepreneur.
This is not a glamorous life at all. I pretty much live in yoga pants and spend the majority of my day in my home office. Two days a week I am at my counseling office, but my colleagues with whom I share an office are usually on different schedules, so I am often there alone when seeing my clients. Beyond that, I go to the gym and yoga practice, and that’s it. I basically see my pets more than I see humans.
I learned really quickly that in order to keep my sanity, I would have to pull myself away from my computer and make time for my awesome friends. I am a very social creature by nature, so it is essential for me to step out with my girls on a regular basis. Sometimes its a couples night, sometimes it lunches, sometimes a yoga class, sometimes it’s a night out – it doesn’t’ matter what the activity is really, just as long as I get to see my friends and have some fun
So what is the takeaway lesson from my experience?
I think it is ao important for ALL career women to make time to get away from the office and socialize (not networking, just hanging out with friends). It is very easy to get sucked up into your business, especially when you are starting out. There is so much to do and it can be overwhelming. But don’t get too caught up in your business world – it will eat you alive. Make time for your friends and enjoy the time you spend with them. They are your support and your time to enjoy life – sometimes there is nothing better than grabbing a cocktail with the girls and catching up!
What do you like to do with your girls?