10 ways to take back your life from The Man.
Hard work is extolled in our society, and even in the Bible. But it seems we’ve taken this supposed virtue and added globalization, copious amounts of caffeine and unlimited Blackberry/iPhone access to create a society in which our worth is almost solely defined by what we do. It’s time to take a step back and restore healthy balance to our lives. Here are 10 ways you can get started.
Observe the Sabbath
After God had spent six days creating the earth, He rested on the seventh day and sanctified it. In Exodus 20: 8:10, we’re instructed: “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work” (TNIV). This isn’t just a suggestion—Sabbath observance is the fourth of the Ten Commandments. Going to church and then coming home to plug in your laptop so you can work the rest of the day just won’t cut it. If you know there’s a big meeting or a final coming up at the start of the week, push yourself hard on the previous Thursday and Friday. Bottom line: If a day of rest is good enough for God, it’s good enough for you, too.
Unplug From Technology
Dr. Bryan Robinson, author of Chained to the Desk, calls technology “the opium of our generation,” and few of us can claim we’ve never felt something of a rush when using a tech toy. But just because you’ve got a new, flashy cell phone, Blackberry or iPhone doesn’t mean you have to answer it, even if your company’s paying for it. Weekends and evenings are what the “ringer off” setting is designed for, so use it. You won’t be able to check work email if you don’t plug in your laptop, and let’s be honest: What could have happened at your job that’s so urgent it needs your immediate attention at 11 p.m. on a Saturday night?
Get a Hobby
Get a gym membership, sign up for a service project or become part of a whitewater rafting club. It doesn’t matter what you do, just commit to any new activity or rediscover an old hobby that requires you to dedicate at least one night a week to it. If you’re worried that you’ll start skipping it so you can work, get involved in a group activity that will depend on your participation or ask someone to keep you accountable. At first you may feel like you’re slacking, but you’ll find life more invigorating, meet new people and have something more to talk about than another oh-so-exciting 70-hour work week.