I can’t sit anymore! Get out and swim a few laps in the pool. Check out these tips. Don’t worry – you don’t have to be a runner to find these suggestions useful.
The whole world has gone mobile. My grandma told me this today on the phone so it is most certainly true. To this mobile tune, my company has tossed office bricks and internet wires in order to keep employees happy, free and agile, and to keep operating costs low. Smarter planet indeed.
…Cut to me packing up my office desk at 6am last Friday morning and driving my files, fake Ikea plant and loud keyboard (that I am quite fond of, sorry but … clunk, clunk, clunk) to my home….
I am now a mobile employee – working some days from home, some days from a mobility center, and some days from Second Cup. Productivity is at its highest. Commute time is at its lowest. It really is a smarter planet.
Aside from this new set-up allowing me to be more productive, it also allows me to innovate my lunch hour. Lunch 2.0. Rather than heading to Subway for a quick break from the office, my new mobile life gives me the freedom to dart down the road at noon, take a 45 minute Latin Dance class, and dart home – all within the hour. Not only am I more productive on days like this, but I find time to try new things during what was ‘old work’s meatball sub’ lunch breaks.
This post is simple: If you are working from home (a day or a few days a week) take advantage of it. Start the day earlier, and, or work a bit later so you may get out and have an adventure – like Salsa Tuesday.
Me + Latin Dance = horridness. However, I was rejuvenated. Life opened up as I murdered every tiny dance move.
Cheers to life between work too.
Secretly, and perhaps even in your office, countless closet runners, bikers, joggers, and speedwalkers watch the clock hit 4:48pm, 4:49pm, 4:50pm – quietly preparing for carefree sports that begin right after work.
You might not see it, but they are sipping Gatorade, or eating power gels – and getting their workout tights on in the office bathroom with 30 minutes of work left. Then – they quietly put their suits back over the top. These people, although ridiculously dressed if you look close (note to Todd and his biker tight story), are living their lives while the rest of us get in our cars, or onto buses and sit in traffic anxious to get home in time for another rerun of Seinfeld.
Instead, try this: bust out the door, down to your bike (if that’s your thing), toss your outer professional disguise into your bag, and tear off down the road. Hitting the road for a jog, run, bike home is so freeing.
Last year I trained for a marathon, and had trouble fitting in my long runs on the weekends. So Mondays at 5:15pm became my long run days. I’d change into my tightest, ugliest outfits in the women’s office bathroom, toss on my runners, and would fill my running belt – desperately trying not to get caught in the elevator down with a colleague (who would so clearly see how much of a nerd I was). Out the door – on the road – sun on my pale, air conditioned-to-death body. Ah, fantastic feeling.
The trick to this MLAW tip is not to go home in between work and play. Go from A – Awesome in 0 seconds. No taking your dog for a walk. Ask a family member to pick the kids up today. Get changed, toss your work clothes in a bag under your desk, and hit the road with just your keys, some cash and … maybe your work swipe card for tomorrow.
The logistics of cars, wallets, etc. can be figured out. Don’t let the details stop you. Figure it out.
Your dog day is over. Great song to get yourself fired out for some instant gratification: Florence + The Machine – The Dog Days Are Over.
I couldn’t tell you if I got myself a coffee at the downstairs deli today, or yesterday. One day I did. One day I didn’t. I literally can’t rip today’s office events apart from yesterday’s. Work this week merged into one super day, similar to when you freeze casserole, and it emerges weeks later in a chunk to be thawed. I digress.
Last night we went for what my Nanna and Poppa used to call a Sunday drive – but the Thursday night edition. And, instead of my Poppa’s green Ford, the TTC was our chariot. We went down to the subway not knowing where we might end up. We surfaced at Chester Station. New world. Secret place. There had to be beer here.
The wonders to the Danforth to Yonge/St. Clair’ers.
One of the things adult life has caused me to terribly miss are the days when I could travel around at will, gently increasing the amount of my Visa to investigate faraway lands.
And so, we found Allens – http://www.allens.to/
And it was Air Conditioned.
Get a move on up.
Life is short.
When work + life start to feel unmanageable, remind yourself of a moment when you felt human. A time when you were close to family and friends, and were truly happy. This photo is such a time for me.
The inspiration for this post came last week when my coworker showed extreme class, and reminded me that we are first and foremost humans. Family members.
Without warning, this person’s family member had a severe stroke. As they flew across the country to join up with their family, their loved one lost grip with the world. No more sight. No more speech. No more world comprehension. Ever. A day later, while by their bedside, my coworker wrote an email to a few of us who offered her their hands and time.
She wrote this sincere, brave email and I couldn’t help but share it here for the benefit of all who seek ‘life’ outside of work:
“Many of you have asked me to let you know if there is anything you can do for me at this time. Please do this: take the time to reach out to loved ones to tell them how much they mean to you. If you are at odds with anyone in your life, please fix it today. You will always have another chance to send that email, or complete that work task. You may not have that chance with the people that matter the most to you. Life is so fragile and not to be taken for granted. I am fortunate to have no guilt or regrets and I wish that for all of you.”
I don’t often write posts of this tone. But, this message stuck with me. While most messages sent to me over email, just like this one, get thinned out over time, and eventually get lost in my disorganized inbox, this one remained top of mind for 7 days. Unheard of.
This reminder is vitally important if you truly want to lead a fulfilling life. Spend time with your family and enjoy your friends – every time you can. Life is precious.
RDN: [def’n: An evening of derailment. The act of unwinding by engaging in delinquent acts apres work. Kyboshing your plan to workout and do your taxes. Opting for wine rather than whining.]
This is so sad… I couldn’t make this stuff up. About 15 minutes ago, I was sitting on the couch, watching “The Biggest Loser”. And then… I heard a noise out the window. What could it be? A bike? Someone taking out the garbage? Why would a cyclist be riding their bike in the winter at 9:00pm at night? It’s not garbage night. I look over at our cat, and she is sniffing, wondering what the commotion is too. I’m in my old man pjs. The tv remote is in my limp hand.
“Kyle, what is that noise?” Kyle looks me up and down, laughs and says, “Lindsay. Who cares! Relax! hahaha You’re as curious as the cat.” I look over at the cat. She looks so pathetic. She, and I, are totally consumed by a noise out the window.
Attention Lindsay. You are still in the 9-5 bubble.
The most evident side-effect of being wound up at work: acting like the neighbourhood grump. The man/woman in the corner house, or ground floor unit, who sits silently in a chair beside the window. They watch people cross the very edge of their property, poised to yell and scream and make a stink. Monitoring who is putting recycling in the garbage bin and vice versa? YOU ARE A POST WORK ZOMBIE. Dethaw!
“I declare tonight an RDN.” A Random Drunk/Delinquent/Derailed Night!
I just opened a bottle of wine, am going to grab Kyle from our kitchen table, and head out onto the fire escape, to escape.
My busy life has turned me into a bit of a,… well a bit of a prat. (def’n: a dry, cold, exhausted and dim worker who comes home, doesn’t do dishes, doesn’t call people back, doesn’t take back that thing to the store on time, doesn’t book that hotel, … drone).
Last night I surrendered to the world, white flag in hand, at 9:00pm and went to sleep.
When I woke up – I felt guilty. Kyle has been living beside my mound (the pile of clothes I don’t wear that compile next to the bed, which do not get hung up) for more than a week now. Not fair to Kyle, or my clothes.
So… on the subway today, I furiously wrote down every single tiny thing I’ve been putting off doing. I had a list of 40 items, and flipped to the next page. The entire subway ride to work, TO-DOs flew out of my brain, off my shoulders and onto this paper.
[Enter busiest work day ever…]
At 4:59pm this afternoon I tore out of work, and tackled 5 things on my list. Book hotel the night before our flight…check. Submit prescription refill request…check. Confirm doctors appointment… check. Check… check..
Making this list of lingering to-dos is actually a tip I learned from The Happiness Project, by Gretchen Rubin. Her book in a nutshell: yes, you’re happy in your life. But you can be happier. Do tiny things, each small and manageable, all of which compile into a happier, more satisfying life.
She suggests you, and I, follow these three steps to begin our own happiness project:
1) Write down all of the things that stress you out, don’t get done, or linger in the back of your mind.
2) Write down all of the things you love doing.
3) Write a list of actions that will both eliminate these ‘nagging tasks’ while at the same time allow you to get or do things you love.
Tonight’s very tacky personal example: 1) I NEED to do the dishes. 2) I LOVE working up a sweat to great music. 3) HAPPINESS PROJECT SOLUTION: House cleaning in my workout gear to music available on those random TV music channels in the 700’s.
Do it. And enjoy your night!