This sounds like a trick question, but it is a matter of perspective. Traditionally people who “live to work” are considered workaholics and people who “work to live” are struggling to get by, and living paycheck to paycheck. However, these stereotypes aren’t always true. What is true is the need for balance in our busy American lives.
It’s a Matter of Attitude
Get up, get ready for work, go to work, work, come home from work, go to sleep, wake up and start all over again. For some Americans, this is a common way to describe life, day after day after day. This is a typical description of someone’s day who is “living to work”. This individual is consumed by work, with no time for personal happiness.
This description can also be applied to someone who is “working to live”. These individuals seem to be running as fast as they can but getting nowhere. Once they are paid, the money goes toward bills/obligations and then it starts all over again. Where is the quality of life in this scenario?
In both cases, a positive attitude can make all the difference in the world. We might not be able to control what happens to us, but we can certainly control our attitude about what happens to us. Sometimes how we react to something is automatic (i.e. being frightened causes a fight/flight reaction), but on a day-to-day basis, how we react is a choice.
Embrace the Positive
If it is not possible to change careers or jobs, change your attitude about your career or job. For example, focus on the positive aspects of what you do, such as:
- Being able to provide for your family
- Meeting new people
- Learning new skills or technologies
Learn to find a positive spin on anything in life. Even in the face of tragedy, positive aspects do present themselves such as heroic acts and solidarity among peers. It is the attitude that you choose to have that makes the difference. Choosing a positive attitude is the key component to success and happiness.
In a previous blog Harnessing the Power of the Law of Attraction, we discuss how like attracts like. So, if you choose to have a positive attitude, positive things will happen to you. The good news is, when you adopt a positive attitude about one aspect of life (i.e. professional or personal) it can’t help but spill over into the other.
So, if you are stuck in the rut of I “live to work” or “work to live”, adopting a positive attitude is the first step in breaking free of the monotony of life. Once this is done, your work/personal life has a chance to be more balanced and therefore happier.
“Work to live” can also mean “I work so I can live the life I choose to live to be happy!”
Timothy Dimoff Can Help You Find Balance for Success
Learn how adopting a positive attitude is a key component to getting the most out of your career and personal relationships. Contact Tim to schedule the Tim’s Talks What You Need to Know for Personal and Professional Success. You can also order a copy of Tim’s book The YOU in Business to find out more about how to build a strong business from the inside out!