Author Topic: Find balance between getting out of 9-5 and spending time on leisure/socializing  (Read 2345 times)

Darinnriley

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Currently Iím working 45 hours a week, from 7:30 till 17:00. I wake up at 4:45 to get exercise done before work. After work I get home around 17:30, cook, eat, do chores etc. Iím sure most people know how it is. Being too tired afterwards to actually focus on reading difficult material or practicing challenging skills like playing an instrument. So only time left for productive personal development is during the weekends.


Currently Iím very discontent because of this:

On the one hand when spending free time pursuing interests like playing the piano, reading, meditation, cooking etc. Iím unable to genuinely enjoy it because I feel pressure, somewhat guilty, that I should be spending all of my time focusing on getting out of the 9-5 so I can create more time for those activities.
On the other hand when I refrain from pursuing my interests and spend all of my time on growing a business Iím unhappy as well because my life is all work and no play. Iím aware that if I do become successful Iíll have more time for myself, but Iím afraid that Iíll be like 40 or 50 by then, having wasted a large portion of my youth. Iím 24 now.
Not to mention time spent socializing and maintaining relationships, something I do too little already.
Have I wasted my chances? Should I have reached success before getting stuck in the 9-5 with bills to pay? Is it really necessary to sacrifice your life in order to get out? What if you do and never succeed?


Something else Iíve been thinking about is how the majority of my colleagues have no problem living this kind of life, as far as I can see. They seem content and happy, having no issues with staying longer or working extra shifts. They seem to have a completely different mindset, really willing to invest time in the company they work for and build a career. To me staying longer feels really unpleasant because Iím already frustrated with how little time I have. I find it difficult to care for the company I work for in that way. I invest so much of my time but nothing gets built, my life doesnít go anywhere. Thatís how it feels to me at least.

I often read that you should be grateful to have the ability to work and be given a job at all and I can understand why people say that. But does that mean you should be a wage slave forever and be thankful about it? Why should I be grateful for having almost no free time and having to put money aside for literally years to afford a vacation or buy the things I want. I know that without my job Iíd be in trouble so of course Iím grateful for the money Iím able to earn. I just donít want to feel guilty for wanting more. Does that make sense or am I really a spoiled person?

In any way my main question is really about how to find balance between securing a better future and spending time on leisure activities/socializing while having very little time to spend in the first place. I would love to hear your thoughts on this, if it sounds familiar and how you might have dealt with the issue of feeling like youíre wasting your time no matter what you do.

Freedomin5

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Sure, I went from working 50+ hours per week (and working evenings and weekends) to working 40 hours, all while maintaining our savings rate. I live a 10 minute walk to work.

Also, youíre not actually working 45 hours per week. 9.5 hours * 5 days = 47.5 hours. You also have to factor in commute time because if you werenít working, you wouldnít have the commute. So add another hour per day or 5 hours per week. You are dedicating at least 52.5 hours per week to work. Thatís more than 10 hours per day, and thatís why youíre so tired.

Two books that really helped me rethink this whole work situation was Your Money or Your Life and Designing Your Life. After reading those books, it prompted me to take a lower paying job with a better QOL.

wageslave23

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Keep looking for a job that's pays more and requires less hours. My industry notoriously requires more hours during tax season.  My first year I worked a couple 7 days weeks. I promised myself I'd never do that again. Found a different job that didn't require anything more than 40 hrs. That is now a standard question at any job I interview for- how many hrs a week and will I ever need to work more? If the answer is yes, then I walk out and never give the job a second thought.

Ron Scott

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The work vs. play debate is really a false dichotomy in that one doesnít necessarily preclude the other.

Whenever we spend many waking hours on one activity we necessarily spend less on others.

Most people need to work. Most need to play.

The trick is to ďfind your museĒ; find work you really enjoy and that feels like play. It is true that most forms of work will take time from other enjoyable activities, but that doesnít mean you canít really like your job.


Dreamer40

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Itís fine to want more and there are ways to structure your life to get there. When I was in my 20s, I used to commute by bus and would spend that time reading/listening to books. Or making quiet phone calls to catch up with people. I tried to cook large batches and freeze food so I wasnít cooking every night unless I wanted to. And tried to not go bonkers at work so I wasnít exhausted when I got home. That left me with a few hours every night to do what I wanted. Also, use whatever vacation and holiday time you have available. If you can take a lunch break and do something you enjoy, do it. I used to go for walks or visit the nearby public library. Also knocked out errands over lunch. If possible, use your sick leave to go to the dentist instead of doing that kind of thing on your personal time. If your career is so demanding that you canít ever do any personal stuff during the work day whatsoever, consider switching to a different field or position.

gooki

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What's going to happen if you pull back? Start leaving at 4:30 every day, or start later say 9 am?

I was amazed how far I could push this. Start at 9:00 am, take a 1-1.5 hour lunch break to walk to the local pool and go swimming, head home at 2:30 pm. And then just be online for any meetings/questions until 4:30 pm at which point I turned off my laptop.

A guy my wife used to work with would head home after lunch whenever the wind was right a go hang gliding.

Hell, I was in a 2pm meeting with my manager one day and one of our software developers popped his head in and asked if the manager "if he minded if he finished up early and went out kite boarding". My managers response was "go for it, but next time don't ask me, just do it, I trust you'll get the work done."

Moral of the story, good managers know employees need a good work life balance to be effective if their roles and will often support or, or simply turn a blind eye. I'd slowly test the waters.

Dee18

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Others have suggested you try to get more flexibility in your work schedule, but that can be hard to do at the beginning of a career, at age 24.  Looking at your schedule, you get up at 4:45 to be at work at 7:30. That's 2 hours and 45 minutes to exercise, get dressed, and get to work.  Assuming you have a 30 minute commute, that's 2 hours and 15 minutes.  Can you be more efficient there?  Are you exercising where you live or work, or do you have added travel time in there?  Do you have a low maintenance routine to get ready for work?  Do you have your breakfast ready to go? In the evening you get home at 5:30.  If you go to bed at 10, that gives you four and a half hours.  That's really a pretty good block of time...unless it gets sucked away by things like social media and watching TV that doesn't really make you feel better.  When you cook, do you go ahead and make a recipe for four servings, freezing the extras for quick meals another time?  None of these ideas may work with your schedule, but they are just to suggest that even small efficiencies can make your day feel much easier.

Rusted Rose

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It's easy to get caught in a thought loop where you just don't see solutions and feel trapped. Familiar, umm, yeap.

Hopefully you aren't using much time for truly mindless escape? Clearly you're interested in more out of life--please let the guilt go! Be as unconventional as you want and don't give a shit about what the rest of society thinks. That gets easier over time. But start where you are and try to ease up the pressure on yourself.

I would suggest feeding your mind with targeted fresh input so that it starts generating new ways to see things. For free. It could lead you to a totally new practical solution as well. This is not escapism but a great way to pick up ideas from those who are mining them and turning them over to the rest of us.

What I've done over the last few years is start listening to all kinds of personal development books through my library app, and I let those lead me to still others. If I find one that's not worth bothering with, I drop it and move on to the next without guilt.

Also there are tons of podcasts that are very useful for the life explorer. These also lead to others, filling out the landscape. I've learned so much that I never even realized was available.

Good times to do this can be during chores and cooking, commutes if it's not distracting, walks and workouts, while getting ready for bed, and some creative endeavors are suited for it as well.

Can't say I've solved life completely yet but we're all at different places with different needs and such. Anyway, that's my suggestion.

wageslave23

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I wanted to add, doing anything for 40+ hours a week, every week is going to suck.  I like golf, sex, working in my yard, reading, exercising, tennis, etc.  But I would not want to do any of these things for 40+ hours a week, every week.  Unfortunately that's how most decent paying jobs are set up.  That's why MMM proposes putting in your time for 10-15 yrs at a 9-5, saving up as much as you can, and then getting the hell out.  Its about 75% of the point of this blog.

RedmondStash

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First, take a breath. No, you haven't ruined anything. And there's plenty of time to make changes if you want to.

I'd try to remove the "shoulds" from how you think about this and instead concentrate on what you want: money to live on, time for socializing, time for your passions, time for exercise, time for basic living maintenance (cooking, cleaning, etc.), time for rest. Which ones do you need or want more of? Which ones can you afford to do less of?

Despite all the "follow your bliss" talk, a lot of people just don't like their jobs. It's okay not to love your job, or even like it. It's even okay to stay in a job you don't like.

You could spend some time thinking about whether there's some other job you'd find more gratifying, and maybe move toward that. Or you could stay where you are and save $$ like crazy, on behalf of Future You. For some people, there is no job they'd be passionate about; it's okay if you can't find one for you.

In my 20s, I spent long hours at work, though I enjoyed the work itself. Then I shifted toward better boundaries around hours, and was surprised to find that I still got jobs. In my 30s, I started working part-time in a field that paid less but was more fun, and I had no regrets.

I think the key is to keep Future You in mind, but not focus so hard on them that Present You is miserable. If you're exhausted or burnt out, Present You is not okay, and it may be best to make some changes toward self-care.

One thing I found about part-time work is that if you enjoy it, you don't count the hours until you can FIRE; you just work that job indefinitely, until you stop enjoying it. There's nothing wrong with taking longer to get to FIRE if you enjoy the journey more that way. You may even find a job you want to stay in after you can afford to leave; part-time work can be a great way to find a nice work-life balance.

Darinnriley

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So many interesting perspectives, I knew this was the right place to ask. Thank you all for taking the time to reply.

Iíd like to respond to each person individually but itís a lot of information to think about and process. I also edit a lot since there are things I donít fully understand and have a hard time putting into words, so please bear with me.

Also, as Iím writing in the evenings I realize how horrible my thinking is after a long day of work, Iím having a hard time concentrating. Itís precisely whatís frustrating me so much, the huge impact work has on my personal life. But itís also inspiring me to find another job where I can work fewer hours. Iíve always been concerned with what I wanted to do but I never realized the amount you work is also important.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2022, 10:16:23 PM by Darinnriley »

joe189man

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Depending on the industry, you need to put in some time to make big jumps in pay. In my 20s i worked hard(ish) and played hard and now are seeing that effort pay off. As far as finding time for things you like, it only gets harder. we have kids now and have almost zero free time that doesn't come at the expense of not doing something else. Meditate or do the dishes then go to bed later. Morning workout or sleep in, or the kids wake up early and do neither. Its all a trade off and its not easy, i am pretty fed up with the status quo.

afox

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On the one hand when spending free time pursuing interests like playing the piano, reading, meditation, cooking etc. Iím unable to genuinely enjoy it because I feel pressure, somewhat guilty, that I should be spending all of my time focusing on getting out of the 9-5 so I can create more time for those activities.
On the other hand when I refrain from pursuing my interests and spend all of my time on growing a business Iím unhappy as well because my life is all work and no play. Iím aware that if I do become successful Iíll have more time for myself, but Iím afraid that Iíll be like 40 or 50 by then, having wasted a large portion of my youth. Iím 24 now.
Not to mention time spent socializing and maintaining relationships, something I do too little already.
Have I wasted my chances? Should I have reached success before getting stuck in the 9-5 with bills to pay? Is it really necessary to sacrifice your life in order to get out? What if you do and never succeed?


Your fear of "....40 or 50 by then, having wasted a large portion of my youth." is a very valid one. You are very wise for realizing this at such a young age, most people are as bad about spending time as they are about spending money. You are young so its not too late to change. Its not like you should quit your job and live every moment like you have 6 months to live, you need to work for multiple reasons but need to find a balance. working 45 hours a week and thinking about work a lot when you're not working is not a good balance IMO. Making less money, retiring later, and having a less successful career are worthwhile "expenses" for having a good work life balance. Keep in mind that when people retire for the most part the career just disappears from your life. The other stuff (hobbies, friends, family, your personal physical and mental health) are with you for life. Therefore it is worthwhile to make more long term investment towards the aspects of your life that you will use for twice as long as your career.


9patch

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I think that you should keep looking for a job where you do get more fulfillment out of it. For me, in my 20s, I did really enjoy my job, and also did a lot of fun things with people from work, like play softball, volleyball, and lots of partying. What job do you have now, and how do you think you can get more enjoyment out of it?

Darinnriley

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Just wanted to thank you all for the advice, it has been very helpful and encouraging to read through. I realised what direction to go in next and feel extremely motivated to move towards reaching new goals.

Sure, I went from working 50+ hours per week (and working evenings and weekends) to working 40 hours, all while maintaining our savings rate. I live a 10 minute walk to work.

Also, youíre not actually working 45 hours per week. 9.5 hours * 5 days = 47.5 hours. You also have to factor in commute time because if you werenít working, you wouldnít have the commute. So add another hour per day or 5 hours per week. You are dedicating at least 52.5 hours per week to work. Thatís more than 10 hours per day, and thatís why youíre so tired.

Two books that really helped me rethink this whole work situation was Your Money or Your Life and Designing Your Life. After reading those books, it prompted me to take a lower paying job with a better QOL.

Youíre absolutely right, itís 10.5 hours per day. I never thought about it like that. Thank you for the recommendations, I started listening to the Designing Your Life audiobook and Iím already intrigued. It seems to be very much related to what Iím asking about.

Keep looking for a job that's pays more and requires less hours. My industry notoriously requires more hours during tax season.  My first year I worked a couple 7 days weeks. I promised myself I'd never do that again. Found a different job that didn't require anything more than 40 hrs. That is now a standard question at any job I interview for- how many hrs a week and will I ever need to work more? If the answer is yes, then I walk out and never give the job a second thought.

That is a nice mentality to have. Currently Iím working in the printing industry, thereís a lot of work and not enough employees. During busy times I am Ďrecommendedí to arrive 30 minutes earlier to get certain tasks out of the way that would otherwise be a nuisance during the day. I refuse to do so but feel frowned upon. Itís also common to need to stay longer (15-30 minutes) to finish remaining tasks. Production keeps going 24/7 and there is always work, always something more that can be done.

The work vs. play debate is really a false dichotomy in that one doesnít necessarily preclude the other.

Whenever we spend many waking hours on one activity we necessarily spend less on others.

Most people need to work. Most need to play.

The trick is to ďfind your museĒ; find work you really enjoy and that feels like play. It is true that most forms of work will take time from other enjoyable activities, but that doesnít mean you canít really like your job.



I hope to find my muse one day!

Itís fine to want more and there are ways to structure your life to get there. When I was in my 20s, I used to commute by bus and would spend that time reading/listening to books. Or making quiet phone calls to catch up with people. I tried to cook large batches and freeze food so I wasnít cooking every night unless I wanted to. And tried to not go bonkers at work so I wasnít exhausted when I got home. That left me with a few hours every night to do what I wanted. Also, use whatever vacation and holiday time you have available. If you can take a lunch break and do something you enjoy, do it. I used to go for walks or visit the nearby public library. Also knocked out errands over lunch. If possible, use your sick leave to go to the dentist instead of doing that kind of thing on your personal time. If your career is so demanding that you canít ever do any personal stuff during the work day whatsoever, consider switching to a different field or position.

Thank you for the practical advice. Listening to audiobooks is something I already love doing while driving, cooking and cleaning. When cooking dishes that take 30 minutes or more I make sure to cook enough for 2 days, but preparing even larger batches and freezing seems like a good idea, something Iíll start doing as well. I cook meals to bring to work in batches also which costs me about 2 hours per week.

What's going to happen if you pull back? Start leaving at 4:30 every day, or start later say 9 am?

I was amazed how far I could push this. Start at 9:00 am, take a 1-1.5 hour lunch break to walk to the local pool and go swimming, head home at 2:30 pm. And then just be online for any meetings/questions until 4:30 pm at which point I turned off my laptop.

A guy my wife used to work with would head home after lunch whenever the wind was right a go hang gliding.

Hell, I was in a 2pm meeting with my manager one day and one of our software developers popped his head in and asked if the manager "if he minded if he finished up early and went out kite boarding". My managers response was "go for it, but next time don't ask me, just do it, I trust you'll get the work done."

Moral of the story, good managers know employees need a good work life balance to be effective if their roles and will often support or, or simply turn a blind eye. I'd slowly test the waters.


Thatís really inspiring to hear. What youíre describing sounds more like an office environment, I work in an industrial environment where people and departments depend on each other a lot. If one person is absent it will have a big impact on what somebody elseís day will look like. Iíve worked in an office before where what youíre describing sounds a lot more probable, makes me really think about returning to a desk job.

Others have suggested you try to get more flexibility in your work schedule, but that can be hard to do at the beginning of a career, at age 24.  Looking at your schedule, you get up at 4:45 to be at work at 7:30. That's 2 hours and 45 minutes to exercise, get dressed, and get to work.  Assuming you have a 30 minute commute, that's 2 hours and 15 minutes.  Can you be more efficient there?  Are you exercising where you live or work, or do you have added travel time in there?  Do you have a low maintenance routine to get ready for work?  Do you have your breakfast ready to go? In the evening you get home at 5:30.  If you go to bed at 10, that gives you four and a half hours.  That's really a pretty good block of time...unless it gets sucked away by things like social media and watching TV that doesn't really make you feel better.  When you cook, do you go ahead and make a recipe for four servings, freezing the extras for quick meals another time?  None of these ideas may work with your schedule, but they are just to suggest that even small efficiencies can make your day feel much easier.


Iím blessed because my gym is a less than 5 minute drive away from home and also enroute to work. In the morning I cook eggs with some bacon and other stuff, it doesnít really take long and I let it cook while I ready myself. Usually Iím done and ready to leave at 5:30 where I like to take 15 minutes to drink a cup of coffee while sitting at the computer. At 5:45 I leave, start workout at 6:00, leave gym at 7:00, finally arrive at work at 7:30.
I could probably eat a simpler breakfast or cut out my coffee but both bring me joy in the morning, itís something I look forward to. Four and a half hours is indeed a good block of time but I get tired early, start yawning and have trouble keeping my eyes open.

It's easy to get caught in a thought loop where you just don't see solutions and feel trapped. Familiar, umm, yeap.

Hopefully you aren't using much time for truly mindless escape? Clearly you're interested in more out of life--please let the guilt go! Be as unconventional as you want and don't give a shit about what the rest of society thinks. That gets easier over time. But start where you are and try to ease up the pressure on yourself.

I would suggest feeding your mind with targeted fresh input so that it starts generating new ways to see things. For free. It could lead you to a totally new practical solution as well. This is not escapism but a great way to pick up ideas from those who are mining them and turning them over to the rest of us.

What I've done over the last few years is start listening to all kinds of personal development books through my library app, and I let those lead me to still others. If I find one that's not worth bothering with, I drop it and move on to the next without guilt.

Also there are tons of podcasts that are very useful for the life explorer. These also lead to others, filling out the landscape. I've learned so much that I never even realized was available.

Good times to do this can be during chores and cooking, commutes if it's not distracting, walks and workouts, while getting ready for bed, and some creative endeavors are suited for it as well.

Can't say I've solved life completely yet but we're all at different places with different needs and such. Anyway, that's my suggestion.

Thank you for the advice! I love listening to audiobooks, they have already helped me a lot life. One of my favorites which I should listen to again soon is Psycho-Cybernetics by Maxwell Maltz.

I wanted to add, doing anything for 40+ hours a week, every week is going to suck.  I like golf, sex, working in my yard, reading, exercising, tennis, etc.  But I would not want to do any of these things for 40+ hours a week, every week.  Unfortunately that's how most decent paying jobs are set up.  That's why MMM proposes putting in your time for 10-15 yrs at a 9-5, saving up as much as you can, and then getting the hell out.  Its about 75% of the point of this blog.

This is simple but genius, why did I never think about it this way. Makes me think about working part-time and finding other ways to structure my life. Like Freedomin5 said, working less with a better QOL doesnít sound like such a bad idea.

First, take a breath. No, you haven't ruined anything. And there's plenty of time to make changes if you want to.

I'd try to remove the "shoulds" from how you think about this and instead concentrate on what you want: money to live on, time for socializing, time for your passions, time for exercise, time for basic living maintenance (cooking, cleaning, etc.), time for rest. Which ones do you need or want more of? Which ones can you afford to do less of?

Despite all the "follow your bliss" talk, a lot of people just don't like their jobs. It's okay not to love your job, or even like it. It's even okay to stay in a job you don't like.

You could spend some time thinking about whether there's some other job you'd find more gratifying, and maybe move toward that. Or you could stay where you are and save $$ like crazy, on behalf of Future You. For some people, there is no job they'd be passionate about; it's okay if you can't find one for you.

In my 20s, I spent long hours at work, though I enjoyed the work itself. Then I shifted toward better boundaries around hours, and was surprised to find that I still got jobs. In my 30s, I started working part-time in a field that paid less but was more fun, and I had no regrets.

I think the key is to keep Future You in mind, but not focus so hard on them that Present You is miserable. If you're exhausted or burnt out, Present You is not okay, and it may be best to make some changes toward self-care.

One thing I found about part-time work is that if you enjoy it, you don't count the hours until you can FIRE; you just work that job indefinitely, until you stop enjoying it. There's nothing wrong with taking longer to get to FIRE if you enjoy the journey more that way. You may even find a job you want to stay in after you can afford to leave; part-time work can be a great way to find a nice work-life balance.


Didnít even notice all the shoulds until you pointed it out, shocked me a bit actually, thanks for bringing it to my attention. Iíll try and be more aware of how I think about things. Your perspective on this is motivating me to consider working part time as well, very inspiring :)

Depending on the industry, you need to put in some time to make big jumps in pay. In my 20s i worked hard(ish) and played hard and now are seeing that effort pay off. As far as finding time for things you like, it only gets harder. we have kids now and have almost zero free time that doesn't come at the expense of not doing something else. Meditate or do the dishes then go to bed later. Morning workout or sleep in, or the kids wake up early and do neither. Its all a trade off and its not easy, i am pretty fed up with the status quo.

Youíre describing something I fully agree with, thank you for putting it into words. Itís nice to hear someone else say it!

I think that you should keep looking for a job where you do get more fulfillment out of it. For me, in my 20s, I did really enjoy my job, and also did a lot of fun things with people from work, like play softball, volleyball, and lots of partying. What job do you have now, and how do you think you can get more enjoyment out of it?

At the moment Iím working logistics in a printing company, unloading trailers and moving stuff around using a forklift. I donít think I can get more enjoyment out of it, there is way too much uncertainty for my liking. Circumstances constantly change and there are lots of distractions preventing me from finishing tasks before starting the next which is really stressful and doesnít work well at all with my personality.

A little more than a year ago I worked in the game industry and am thinking about moving back there, game development has always been something I really enjoyed after all. Iím slowly starting to understand why I left in the first place but itís a bit much to get into here without boring you with details. Glad to hear you enjoyed your job, itís something I really wish for everyone. Lots of people seem so miserable, Iíll do whatever it takes to ensure thatís not going to be life for me.

Dee18

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I didn't realize you were working in an industrial setting.  I am sure that is way more exhausting than my experience, where throughout the day I could regularly take mental breaks...or even go for a quick walk or grab a snack whenever I felt like it.  Best of luck finding a job that gives you more of what you are seeking. "Designing Your Life" is a great start for that.

Ron Scott

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The work vs. play debate is really a false dichotomy in that one doesnít necessarily preclude the other.

Whenever we spend many waking hours on one activity we necessarily spend less on others.

Most people need to work. Most need to play.

The trick is to ďfind your museĒ; find work you really enjoy and that feels like play. It is true that most forms of work will take time from other enjoyable activities, but that doesnít mean you canít really like your job.

I hope to find my muse one day!

And it is tricky!

Many organization psychologists ascribe to the notion that job satisfaction and dissatisfaction are separate and need to be considered independently.

Job satisfaction would relate to the work itselfónature of the job, your achievements, possibilities for personal  growth  and  recognition and promotion, etc. Job dissatisfaction would result from the working environment such as physical conditions, salary, company policies, job security, supervision, and relations with others.

So you need to know what type of work floats your boat, and find a place that provides a good working environment.

Since we spend so much time working it pays to put effort into bothóespecially the environmental factors. Many people can find great satisfaction in a variety of work disciplines, but a bad employer just takes all the fun out of it. Many people canít wait to quit or RE because of working conditions.

I find it frustrating that weíre about 200 years into the industrial revolution and larger companies and we still havenít cracked this nut.

Good luck!

Malossi792

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"Four and a half hours is indeed a good block of time but I get tired early, start yawning and have trouble keeping my eyes open."

This. If you really do go to bed at 10 pm, and fall asleep after 15 minutes, you only sleep 6.5 hours. Sleep deprivation is a thing. Been there, done that. You are young and need 8 hours of sleep each and every night. Just prioritize it above all else, you can do it, believe me. Other suggestions were top notch too, but you're going to feel miserable unless you give the body (& brain) the correct amount of sleep. You know it's enough when it's easy to get up, or you wake up a bit sooner than the alarm rings.
Greetings from another overworked 20-something :)

LongtimeLurker

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There are things you can do to help make more time that don't require major changes. Reduce your commute as much as possible, or find ways to make it enjoyable/productive(listen to books on tape, take public transport and do something productive on the way).  Maybe take time during the middle of the workday to work out, allowing you to sleep in more and stay up later.

Why are you working those extra 5 hours? Are they required or do you just feel like you need to use that time to get your duties done?