As I am attempting to find a job and talking to a few different companies, I am always interested to talk to current employees about themselves. Do they only talk about work? What sort of hobbies do they talk about? Does it sound like they are able to do things with their nights/weekends?
It’s going to be great to have a paycheck, but if you don’t ever have time to spend some of that on yourself, is it even worth it? Also, do the hours you put in to earning your paycheck zap all the energy you have? To me, “having it all” means two things:
- Finding passion in the hours I work
- Finding time to follow passions outside of work
I make the first point because I have experienced jobs where I spent 40 hours a week doing something I cared very little for and it was painfully boring. The days are slow, the work is not exciting, and there is very little enjoyment. Part of this passion that I strive for includes being able to collaborate. Hours, days, or weeks spent in a hallway closet of an office or in a cube destroys what could be an enjoyable job. Having the chance to interact with others strikes energy and pushes myself to bring more life to the job that I am doing.
The second point follows more on what people talk about when they discuss a work-life balance. Do they get out early enough in the night to participate in clubs or group activities? Is there time to have a hobby? Can you find a few hours a week to work out or be active? All these are important for mental/physical health and improve the quality of work somebody can bring to the office during the 8-5 grinds.
I have almost definitely developed this mentality with the help of my older brothers and their wives. Hearing them talk about their different jobs, one can see on their face whether or not they truly enjoy it and a lot of that revolves are how much time they are allowed to do things outside of work. One of my sister-in-law’s was a CPA for many years, and could not stand how little time she had to herself. She was making a lot of money for two reasons: many hours at work and absolutely zero opportunities to spend that money as all time was put into her CPA job.
As an intern for the past few years, I have been pretty capped at 40 hours and I’ve felt that was a good balance with room to possibly spend more if I loved the work. I’ve been able to experience the cities that I’ve lived in and travel on the weekends. While it is hard to “have it all” on an entry level job, I hope that my experience can continue as I fully enter the work force.