As you know, I may have binge watched "Love is Blind" in a short amount of time during the pandemic. Was it out of boredom? Interest? Suspense? The world may never know.
Amber, one of the women that found love, said something really profound to her now husband, Barnett. They were sitting in his house discussing finances. She worked restaurant jobs and other gigs for money, disclosing she had little to no savings. When Barnett pried to understand, her response literally changed me.
"I don't live to work. I work to live." - Amber, mic drop
I have honestly been in deep reflection since hearing this. I have been living to work my whole life. I quickly progressed in my career becoming a director before 29. I was fearless with moving, even half way across the country. I came in early, I stayed late, and I said "yes" to everything through my 20's. I was so addicted to my career that I missed out on friends, their kids growing up, family reunions, family birthdays (sorry mom!), potential partners. All I remember from my 20's was going to the gym, drinking coffee, rarely eating carbs, and drinking booze 1-3x in a decade span. Not joking.
If you are in student affairs, you most likely have done the circle activity of how you identify. I cannot recall I time I did not have my career in one of the bigger circles or as one of the main identifiers. I only thought in the context of my career. Not hobbies, not fun, not travel. Hell, my first adult vacation was at 27. I went to Florida and loved it so much I bought a timeshare. I have used it once since then.. four years and thousands of dollars later.
So how as a woman do you not identify with your career, or identify less? Why do we look for all of these emotional connections in our jobs (damn genetic wiring!). But really, why do we need to feel all of Maslow's hierarchy of needs in our workplace? Why do I need affirmations, high fives, or desire to always "say yes" thinking it will give me this abundance of emotions? Why do we (or I) let work hold this much power?
Here I am in CT's Phase 2 still reflecting on Amber's quote on how to find community, figure out my hobbies, and these emotional connections consistently outside of my 9 to 5. A pandemic does not help, let's acknowledge that. It's a starting point for realizing this power and craving I have to feel this intense connection to a job.
Literally, "Love is Blind" changed my life.