What work should NEVER take away from you

 

If we take a second to look critically at our lives, as workers or business people, we’d begin to see just how much our lives have begun to revolve around work. We tend to get carried away with it – so carried away, sometimes, that the entirety of our days, weeks and years become devoted to it. Now, this is not entirely a bad thing, getting immersed in work. Where the problem lies, is how we tend to forget other areas of our lives, which in the long run, are actually more important than work. Some of the things your job should never take away from you are:

 

  • Family: If you never had to grow up with a parent who was constantly jetting off chasing contract after contract, then you might not fully understand how fortunate you are. Sadly, family is one of the easiest aspects of life to consider; to brush off because “they’d still be there when I get back”. However, constantly chasing work could cause you to miss some important developments. Like how Chris Brown had to find out on Instagram that his daughter had started walking? You don’t want that, do you?

 

  • Friendships: Very similar to family, it’s easy to keep your friends on hold because of work. What we tend to forget, however, is that when all is said and done, these are the people that hold it down for you.

 

 

  • Love: Working 9-5 jobs already make it difficult to socialize. Trying to get a startup on its feet makes it even more impossible. At some point, it’s easy to begin to imagine that one can live without love; but we really can’t, we weren’t designed to and shouldn’t. Make time for love – people, passions and things you love.

 

  • Adventure: Traveling, climbing Mount Everest, taking a swim in the ocean might just seem like a waste of precious time, but adventure is great. Do something new, do something different, take up a challenge, alone or with company. Keep pushing your boundaries. Adventure keeps you young and vibrant. Variety makes it even more exciting. Push your boundaries and have a blast at it.

 

 

  • Healthy Living: This is also one of the easiest but detrimental things to ignore. Exercising becomes a thing of the past when you’re too busy waking up as early as possible to beat traffic, or when you get back really late and all you want to do is sleep. Eating healthy is difficult on the go and you have to get creative with meals. We know being sedentary is extensively damaging to health and need to include as much natural movement as is possible to fit in. Eat better, move more, you know the drill; borrowing from Nike, ‘’just do it’’.

 

Every so often, it is necessary to take a step back, to recalibrate, redefine the things that are truly important in the bigger picture. While work is important, we need to learn to invest ourselves in the things that truly matter!

Hey it’s January Again – What’s the Deal?

 

Hey! It’s January again – What’s the Deal with being broke or expecting to be broke? There is an interesting commercial in the media in which a lady asked her friend who had just bought some shoes – “its January, ain’t you supposed to save”, to which the friend replied – “I am saving already, every time I buy, I save”! It’s an interesting perspective to savings. Advertisers know how these things work on the mind, and that’s why there is an emphasis on the word “save” when pitching prospective customers to buy whatever the offering is. In reality, when you spend on non-essential consumption, you are not saving, you are spending, it doesn’t matter how much discount, real or imagined, that you may be getting.

 

January is a very interesting month, especially in Nigeria. Nothing much happens in the first week as people are just arriving from all the various places they went to cool off for the yuletide. They return mostly broke. Activities increase by the second week as traffic returns back to Lagos, even if the business side of things remains slow.

 

People say it’s the longest month of the year, but certainly not in terms of the number of days, as there are six other 31-day months in the year. What makes January long is the combination of slow business and empty pockets. For most employees, December salaries and Christmas Bonuses have been received before the celebration season in December, and by the time work resumes in January, the money is all gone with the winds of the yuletide! Things get more complicated for a lot of parents as it’s also the beginning of a new term for school children and that means, school fees are due!

 

Here is the truth, January offers a new page for us to plan our finances for the year. There are some things that you won’t be able to figure out, but then there are quite a number of major expenditures that you can identify for the year. You know when the rent will be due, and children school fees, you want to buy a ram for your father during the next Eid Kabir, or you are planning to get married this year? Any planned surgery? It could also be a vacation during your leave or your equity contribution for a mortgage of auto-acquisition. Are you starting a new business this year or expanding what you are currently doing? January is a good time to list out all these major items and begin to plan how you will fund them.

 

Planning helps keep your goals in sight, channel your resources appropriately, and think ahead of solutions to financial challenges that may arise in the course of the year. If you have not put pen to paper to take a shot at charting how you will achieve your major expenditures this year, it’s a good time to do it. You will be amazed at how much it helps to keep your eyes on the ball this year. Happy new year!