Hiding behind work would always be my thing.
Always coming up with new projects.
And more to do.
‘I don’t know how you can do what you do’
And using it as fuel to do even more.
‘Ah, you know me. I just love what I do so much’
The truth is – from the very young age I believed I had to work – preferably more than others – if I wanted a happy life.
I knew my mum wasn’t going to give me a million dollars just like that and I very early developed a ‘can do’ attitude.
I was happy to work.
And when I saw results I was getting, I would happily work more, too.
You know what was the other belief I developed?
That I can’t stop.
That I always have to work a lot, because otherwise everything will fall apart.
In other words..
My so called happy life I worked so hard for will fall apart if I ever stop working non stop.
I realised work has always been there for me, too.
It helped me gain financial independence that I used to create one of my best memories.
I mean HOW could I ever just leave it?
So I would choose work – every time.
I would go out on dates but as soon as it seemed like it was impacting my work, I would cut it off.
‘Sorry, you’re great, but I’m just too busy’
I gave up on so many real life connection opportunities because I felt I just couldn’t change my relationship with work.
And let’s be honest – work could never really hurt me like all those guys potentially could, so it was easier to stay safe…and just work.
And then 2020 happened
First I was diagnosed with cancer.
Then I moved to a place where I had no reception or WiFi for a week.
And I couldn’t work.
I also probably didn’t want to – I just wanted someone to give me a hug.
And there was no one.
But there it was – realisation that it’s not all about work.
That hiding behind work is still hiding.
And if you want a great hug – you need to put yourself out there and risk it.
And it may pay off, because you know what?
Somewhere between my cancer diagnosis and lockdown I met the best guy in the world.
And it felt different – I didn’t want to lose him. I wanted us to have a real chance.
It didn’t come without challenges:-)
And I’m still learning how to reframe what I used to believe
I no longer feel bad about leaving my phone at home and switching off my laptop.
I create healthy boundaries so I can be present for both – him and my work.
And mostly myself and my own sense of balance.
Turns out it’s not about working harder, it’s about working smarter.
Because my business has never been doing better.
And more importantly- I’ve never had a bigger smile on my face.
So if you find yourself hiding behind work…
You know chances are it’s an excuse.
And you’re just scared.
And it’s ok. We all are.
But for what it’s worth:
I’ve learned that the world doesn’t fall apart when you give yourself permission to go out there and try to create what you’ve been really hiding from.
Whether it’s a relationship, an adventure or a new hobby
Whatever that is you’ve been missing.
And who knows…
One day instead of hearing:
‘I don’t know how you do it all’
You can hear:
‘Wow, I’ve never seen you so happy’
So deciding to stop hiding behind work…
Might not be such bad decision after all