Friday, January 30, 2009


My colleague told me of a conversation that occurred a few years ago that involved a comment made about my work schedule by one of my associates.

This came up yesterday while we were chit chatting about her cutting back her work day by 1 starting this summer. I was ecstatic for her. She felt that the move down will garner some resistance. Of course she will be able to do it -- it's her business after all, but nonetheless she expects some "disapproval".

I then proceeded to say that I've not been privy to such resistance through my many changes to my work week schedule over the years. Then she told me.

Apparently my associate said back 3 yrs ago or so when I made a work reduction that he felt I wasn't "in this for right reasons" whereby my colleague replied with "she is building her life, that's reason enough". I thanked her for saying that. But I felt angry nonetheless.

Where does he get off projecting his more than full time work hours as the "gold standard"?

Taking 2 weeks of holidays a year isn't a great example of health!

Not seeing his family isn't a great way to tell them you love them!

Work is a means to fulfill part of my life and allows me to fund the other part. I'm lucky that what I do enables me to help people directly along the way and get compensated for it.

You know what the funniest thing was? This particular associate also assumed that because I work the hours I do, I was not able to afford to buy a house either! He asked me where I was renting when I moved closer to work 1 1/2yrs ago. That comment speaks loudly of how money must flow in his life.

If he only knew what I've managed to do with my income...frugality goes a long does some life skills!


  1. Where did he live, 1980? Obviously never heard of work/life balance.
    You are doing the right thing and his poor money management skills are doing the complete opposite for him, by the sound of it.

    By the way, you have been a bit of a bad influence on me now. I have started checkng out property n Newfoundland. I found it is only 5 hours away from us! Not much further than the Crete house. I am visualising a little cabin in the woods, overlooking a lake!

  2. I shared an office with a guy like that recently. I could tell he disapproved of me not being in the office for 45 hours a week like he was. (He made snide remarks all the time) Funny thing was, I'm 90% sure he spent most of those hours surfing the internet. Instead, I productively got through my work and then went home.

    I think most of the resistance to this new (and inevitable) way of living comes from people still stuck in that outdated mentality of quantity over quality.

    At least you have a don't worry too much about him.'ve had a bad influence on me too. I want to buy another property too! :) I'm dreaming of green hills, woods, a lake (or sea) and a little cottage. Where is that coming from?

  3. Give me a break.

    This story is exactly the sort of thing that makes me want to get out of the MegaCorp race. Face time is NOT the measure of a person's productivity.

  4. I feel bad for your colleague. He has to validate his own work/life balance choices by criticizing other people's choices which don't agree with his philosophy. A happy fulfillied person wouldn't have to do that; a happy fulfilled person would be happy for you and wish you the best.

    You're living life by your own rules. That makes you a pioneer of sorts, unfortunately there will be haters and people who resent you.

    You're on the right track - you're happy and healthy - the proof is in the pudding, as they say.

  5. Hi Lizzie!

    Oh no! I'm glad I have an anonymous blog...I don't want your husband after me for being a bad influence!

    I'm sure you've noticed the great prices of real estate in Nfld. I didn't realize it was only 5 hrs either.

    Hi livingmyrichlife!

    I don't know what bothers me more. The fact that he always acts all up and cheery when he sees me and then says things behind my back or if he would just come out and say it to my face. Maybe he is hoping his forced optimism will inspire me to the dark side...:)

    Oh no, not you too!! I'm really in trouble now...

    I believe that there is something in us that yearn for "roots" of some sort. To take responsibility for a piece of this earth and take good care of it and to put our personal stamp on it.

    It's more than a fleeting romantic gesture. It's something that resonates deep inside. And in turn, that piece of earth we've chosen (or has chosen us) give us something that is intangible but nurturing.

    Hi Carlos and Money!

    I can't agree with you both more. There are still some "old timers" out there!

    I thought I would feel angry on Friday (as we work together that day) but I was fine.

    Thank you all for your support.

  6. Jealousy maybe? I know in the US we have some fatalistic view that you must slave yourself for 40+ hours a week for 40+ years of your life to be worthy. I think it's changing with us generation of 30-somethings, who want a more balanced life. If I had started out my financial life better perhaps I'd be there with you :) I'm working my butt off right now, but we could use the money and I want to take advantage of the opportunity. I can't wait till saying no to OT is OK financially, one step towards freedom.

  7. Hi Miss M!

    I don't know if he is jealous...but for sure closed minded! He is about 5 years older than me but that may put him in a different enough generation that we do not see eye to eye on this.

    I think you are doing great. You have such a strong awareness and focus. That is going to propel you to your goals quickly!

  8. Hi there ! Hats off to u for that crystal clear understanding of why u work and putting all of it in so few words.... "Work is a means to fulfill part of my life and allows me to fund the other part." This is one of the most powerful sentences I have come across so far. Let me admit, it is this thought that drove me to resign from my job as soon as I completed 25 years and got some required degree of financial security... but I could never put it into words so briefly, yet lucidly. Thx a lot. And yeah, I am happy I read this post of yours, curious to know why u r so " peeved ". I would invite u to go through my post " Feedback" ( link available on my site)and share yr comments. Would be precious for me.

  9. Thanks snigdha! I will reply on your post!

  10. Hey, thx for reading my post and sharing yr comments. Yes, I can understand your feelings when u got to know about his duplicity 3 yrs later ! And with your clarity about why u work, how much and in what manner, I ve no doubts that you had no probs in handling his feedback. You r definitely on the right course, dear.