We are a generation known for spending too much money on overpriced avocado on toast and espresso martinis. But we are also becoming a generation of hard workers striving to be the ultimate #girlboss. 9 to 5 is a thing of the past and we are now expected to work 7-7 followed by an evening gym sesh/important social occasion/cooking a meal containing at least 11 vegetables from scratch.
But sometimes, we just want to have a day off to stay in our PJs, watching Bridget Jones’s Baby and only get up to answer the door for our Deliveroo order.
But then we go onto Instagram and see everyone else making the “most” out of their day and “grinding” (that word makes me cringe, but you know what I mean) and we are left feeling guilty for not having reached our full level of productivity.
But is this guilt we experience healthy?
Of course not. But we can’t help but feel it anyway.
I’m all for chasing dreams, but we are now living in a culture which encourages work to come first. We sacrifice our health and happiness to avoid feeling as though we are being lazy.
But resting is just as important as working hard. In fact, rest is the very thing which will allow us to keep going. Otherwise we will be forced to stop as a result from doing too much.
Instead of looking at a day of boxset bingeing as being lazy, we should deem this time as a necessary recovery period. Feeling guilty over having rested instead of answering 93854 emails will only hinder this essential time of turning our brains off to everything apart from the plot of Greys Anatomy.
And who’s to say that the photo someone posted of their laptop and an oat milk latte means that they are actually working?
This guilt is also not limited to work. There are so many expectations created by the media, our families and friends as well as ourselves (who often have the most unrealistic of them all). We want to make the most out of twenties by travelling, but we also want to build a career for ourselves. We want to be out partying and not worrying, but we also want to go to the gym and live a healthy lifestyle.
It seems that whatever we choose to do, we will feel guilty for not doing the very opposite.
It is important to make the most out of a day as life is too short to waste it. But how can we enjoy it, if we measure our self worth by how productive we have been? Instead, don’t look at your work emails on your day off. Enjoy that Saturday night when you choose to stay at home and have a cuppa and a bath and in bed before 10pm. And who is to tell you that this isn’t fun anyway?
Hard work should not replace happiness. We need to distinguish between laziness and rest. And stop being so hard on ourselves. Because you are already doing enough.