“Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?”
“He’s sick. My best friend’s sister’s boyfriend’s brother’s girlfriend heard from this guy who knows this kid who’s going with the girl who saw Ferris pass out at 31 Flavors last night. I guess it’s pretty serious.”
In 2014 the UK Government announced the initiative to launch a new Health and Work Service after it was identified that one million UK workers were off sick for more than a month. In fact, it has been calculated that 130 million days are still being lost to sickness absence every year in Great Britain and working-age ill health costs the national economy £100 billion a year. Whaaaat?
The press release issued to support the campaign stated: “The work-focused occupational health assessment will identify the issues preventing an employee from returning to work and draw up a plan for them, their employer and GP, recommending how the employee can be helped back to work more quickly…”
Nothing mentioned about shutting the stable door BEFORE the horse bolts however.
Everyone wants quality of life and of course what that is exactly is subjective. But it seems that for a lot of people the quality element of their life relates more to cars, gadgets, houses & holidays than health. We all have bills to pay, living isn’t cheap, so of course we need to think about looking after our income. However, relying on supplements, antibiotics and other magical medical cures to keep us ticking over isn’t really a sensible option for our longer-term health. There is no magic pill to bring you back from a total collapse after all.
I have the pleasure of knowing (and respecting) several high-flying executives that are frazzled to within an inch of their lives, & (I think) are in desperate need of a few months off to reset, recharge and have a bloody good laugh. And then there are the others I know that have already done exactly that. These are the folks that have noticed the damage that the daily hustle is doing to their health, their relationships, their souls but who are also happy to embrace the lifestyle changes that taking a break will bring with it. Namely, less cash but more time.
When I talk to people who are craving a break from work they say the same things; fed up of the lost hours thanks to the commute, fed up of being made to feel guilty when kids are poorly, fed up of being asked ‘what’s next?’ when they share their successes. We all just want to be appreciated after all.
It’s a shame that it takes a person to get to the very edge of their health and sanity before they feel that they need some time out. It’s more of a shame that businesses aren’t set up to be able to be more supportive. Years of experience and intellectual property just walks out the door simply because they can’t let someone work 3 or 4 days a week, instead of 5.
This blog from Darius Foroux says it all: “If work is holding back your personal or spiritual growth, find different work. If work is fucking up your relationships, again, find different work.”
Also, take some time to centre yourself now and again. We are always changing, always evolving, always developing our thoughts and our ideals. If you don’t keep asking yourself how you feel about things, how will you know if you’re taking a step closer to your goal, or many steps further away?
“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” Ferris Bueller, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off 1986.
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