The word "selfish" has a bad rap. I get it. Being "concerned chiefly or only with yourself" seems like kind of an asshole move, but is that always the case? I don't think so. The "Screw you, suckers!" variety of selfishness deserves its critics, but what about the kind of selfishness that simply means you're putting yourself first?
I work from home on Fridays. It feels like such a treat. I don't set an alarm, so I wake up when my body wants to. I shlepp around in jogging pants and I spend the day writing or working on administrative stuff. I take a long lunch and I enjoy a manicure or a hot bath or a sunny stroll. I love that I can do that.
You're working your tail off, and yes, you are getting enquiries, invitations to speak at events and so on. But if you have that feeling in the pit of your stomach that something isn't right -- you don't feel valued or respected, or worse, you feel taken advantage of -- then it's time to set stronger boundaries in your business.
So, what makes you look bad? Trying to upstage your manager, particularly if you are a lot younger than them. New ideas are always welcome, but you should always be taking them to your manager first. I see many hardworking, successful millennials in the workforce, but there are some I wish I could just course-correct a little bit.
Some time ago I began to question this whole idea of work-life balance. I asked why do we frame the debate as if work and life are not one and the same? Do we not think work is part of the continuum that makes up our life? For me, anyway, and I suspect many others, work is an essential part of life and how we contribute to our society.
How many women do we know -- colleagues, friends, family members, ourselves -- who are pursuing a career while tending to other priorities, like raising a family? No doubt more than we can count on two hands. But how closely do we consider what it's like to walk in these women's shoes? We all stand to gain by talking to women about their aspirations and how they can best achieve them. What better day than International Women's Day to start the conversation.
Think of all of the crap that is going on with your physical health, especially any recurring issues. Only you and your doctor can determine what might be causing these symptoms. But if you have an unresolved chronic issue, or recurring health issues, or multiple health issues, it's possible that some of that is rooted in some neglected stress. Don't you think?
You can always be fired, downsized, or replaced. Your company could fold. The economy could tank. Depressing, I know. But, oddly enough, it's also empowering. Knowing there's no 100% guarantee frees you from pressure fall in line, fly under the radar, cave to the pressure, and suck it up, all for the sake of "security."
Whether you are a man or a woman, you have both masculine and feminine energy in you. Your job is to coax these energies out, embrace them and express yourself through them. Both men and women have been socialized to believe that it is all about proficiency, but as we've seen, the results of competent individuals, who are not considered likeable, can be viewed as subpar.
Why paint yourself with the either/or, black-or-white binary system of gender, when instead you could be a vibrant mosaic of masculine and feminine attributes? By letting go of stereotypes and celebrating individuals with a mix of traditional gender characteristics, you'll create more opportunities for yourself and others.
If you're a workaholic, chances are you don't have the opportunity to work out as much as you'd like to. Throw in a family at home and minimal energy on the weekends, and the result is usually chronic pain, insufficient and unstable sleeping patterns, and no real escape from the cycle, day in and day out.
As Canada celebrates Labour Day weekend, there are important questions concerning Gandhi's premise that we must begin asking ourselves. For example, how do we deal with a world of wealth without work? Upon entering an era of ironies, we find ourselves forced to deal with some increasing contradictions -- employability replaces employment, people without jobs, jobs without people, numerous part-time jobs replacing full-time ones, employment numbers going down because people have stopped looking for work altogether.