The Work-Life Connection

2022 was an especially tough year for me and my family.   We grieved the loss of several family members, struggled to help aging parents, and ran into our own fair share of health concerns to be quite honest.

At the same time, I experienced moments of tremendous joy, at home and at work.  I will never forget the moment we won Pitchfest at HR Tech, or seeing our product in the hands of a customer for the first time. I took my first real fishing trip in three years, (Alaska no less) unlocking a passion I couldn’t really enjoy over the pandemic.  I spent nearly every Sunday enjoying a great meal, surrounded by my family. I couldn’t be more grateful for those moments.

What became clear to me in 2022 through all of these ups and downs, was how interconnected my work life and personal life have become.  When life is going well, it’s easy to show up to work strong and give my best performance.  But when life is going off the rails, it’s sometimes hard to show up at all, much less give my best.  And the opposite is true as well – the ups and downs at work impact how I show up at home.  

But I am learning how to recognize when I’m letting one area impact the other.  Sometimes it can’t be helped…when you lose a loved one, the only thing you can do is give yourself grace and time to process it.  But sometimes I allow a bad day at work to spill over at home, which is a habit I’m working to break in the new year.  

As I look forward to what 2023 has to offer, there are some lessons from 2022 that I’m going to carry with me:

  • Lesson 1:  “Pausing can be productive.”  I learned that sometimes facing the actual issue head-on each day via a pause can help better address the noise of stress and the internal voice that sometimes wins.
  • Lesson 2: “Value the time in front of you, today.”  None of us really know what tomorrow brings. Therefore, I’ve learned to enjoy the people, the friends and family and the value those relationships mean daily.
  • Lesson 3: “Self-care cannot be ignored.” While it’s difficult finding time away from work, it’s critical to get off the grid and totally remove yourself from the daily grind and stresses of life. Investing time into a life passion or hobby can be super therapeutic and assist with a much needed life reset.  

They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but I’m living proof that’s simply not true.  Even nearing the end of my career, I am still learning every day and building my self-awareness.  It’s never too late to build the life you want.

Article originally posted on LinkedIn.