What I have learnt in the last year: I love having a life, the 100k salary is not worth it and I actually like being engaged

Posted: August 21, 2013 in K J Foxhall Blog
Tags: , , ,

This post unfortunately comes in the wake of the 21 year old banking apprentice who died from working all-nighters.

I have always been a workoholic, for more years than I can remember. I have stayed at the office late, developed a very fruitful career which I thought was acknowledged.

However, I was head-hunted, I was content in the job I had prior but this one boasted a package that could not be beat. The payrise was initially in double figures, it was closer to the train station, the hours were shorter (or so I thought), there was more progression….. Until I got in through the front door.

Oh how things were very different.

I didn’t clock on to this at first but the management kept referring to “work-life balance” and “we want people to have lives….”.

Ok what is that supposed to mean?

Well 2 months in I realised.

Evenings were gone, weekends were gone, friends and family never saw me, and as for the ventures I was involved in I might as well not bother. As for swimming, it was a struggle to do anything active when you are barely eating or sleeping.

The pounds dropped off and so did the muscle that I needed for open water swims, darker circles grew around my eyes, my sleep was invaded by work queries and so on.

Basically there is only so much the human body can take and I had done this for too many years now. I valued the life I had made.

So what have I taken away from this?

Well nowadays there isn’t much reward in working all hours God sends, you just get more work because you are reliable.

I love my life, and now that I don’t have one I miss it even more.

My aim was always the 100k before retirement – I was on scope to achieve it in a few years, but now my priorities have changed, after all I could get run over by a bus tomorrow.

But I have never backed away from a challenge, and where there may seem to be a problem, there is normally a solution.

On a more positive note, I became engaged this year, and to my surprise (and a little shock) I actually really like it!

From the industry I work in, if you are an ambitious woman you can expect your private life, namely your marriage to fail at some point. Now this isn’t always the case but very often at events I was surrounded by women who were top of their game, but they were also divorced. Sure enough they managed to gain the house and the kids but they also had to maintain the career as well. I didn’t want this life, and having parents, aunts and uncles who were also divorced, this left me very unsettled to the prospect of marriage.

Also I saw so many hypocritical people getting married for the novelty rather than the actual meaning behind it, I didn’t want to be one of them either.

However these fears were completely eradicated when my partner asked me. I actually got enthusiastic at the prospect of my wedding, and I don’t even like weddings, it was like I had completely changed.

While our day will be informal and only include the minimum spectators (i.e. Close family and 1 or 2 friends), it will be completely what we want, 50\50. More posts to come on this I’m sure.

So what can I let you take away from this? Well one positive thing, one negative and one that is middle of the road – I suppose that is not bad. The aim in the next few months is to get all of the bubbles aligned.

Wish me luck!

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