Fashion,  Thoughts

Work to Live? Or Live to Work. Is one better?


Jacket: Zara

Jumper: Primark, can’t find. Alternative one here.

Jeans: Primark, can’t find. Similar one here.

Shoes: Converse

Photographer: Connull Drummond 

Is there a better one? Work to live over Live to work? I suppose to think of this efficiently you need to understand the meaning of each. I know you know the saying, but I’ll bet your definition is different than anothers… 

Everyones interpretations of sayings can be quite mixed. Which is awesome cause then it can lead to an open discussion. 

I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts recently, so I’ve been hearing ALOT of open discussions. I’ve switched from listening to music to Gary Vee podcasts whilst on my daily commute to work and in the gym. This was needed, Gary Vee posts everyday and I’ve only relatively recently got seriously into his content – so I had 52 podcasts to catch up on!! My god Gary you can talk!! lol

Anyways my recent job offer got me thinking about the typical work/life balance. I have always been in the belief you should work to live, not live to work. 

This is before I found out what I really wanted to do with my life, and whether or not I wanted to be career oriented. 

In all honestly I didn’t initially want to be career oriented. Don’t get me wrong I had very career-consumed goal ambitions (like I used to want to be a lawyer or a vet or an actress. These kinds of jobs you NEED to make them your life. You can not half ass these types of careers. Well you can… but the likelihood of you being good at them is limited… well that is what I THINK… I could be wrong lol ) but I was easily persuaded off these courses for me by others, my teachers telling me I was too ethnically different to get roles in the acting word or my own realisation that being a lawyer mean’t having an incredible memory for minuscule details of the law and I thought fuck… I can’t no that. I can barely remember what I had for lunch last week. . . 

As Gary Vee says its excellent to be self aware and know your strengths and weaknesses. 

I rationalised that I need to be realistic in what I wanted from my life, work wise. 

However, after looking up interpretations of the live to work, work to live meanings I found something quite interesting. In an article by a Mark Kolakowski in the Balance Careers he described those who work to live as:

  “people [that] try to cut corners, to gain the maximum pay for the minimum amount of effort. Others do indeed take great pride in their work..”. 

This kind of pissed me off initially when he claimed that those that work to live ‘cut corners’ which I don’t tend to do. (I was about to say never do but everyone has done at one point in their life so there is not point in denying it.) I am hard worker and I’ve done grunt work most of my life. 

I understand the hierarchy of the work place; the longer you’re there the bigger role you have and can therefore unofficially be your boss. Is that meant to be true? Nope. Is that the reality when you work in the bar and retail industry? Yep.

But when you stop and think, he’s not wrong. There are a lot of people I know that are very hard workers and they work to live but I also know a lot of people that get their kicks from working the least amount possible and yet take the most credit.  Its frustrating but thats life, however in this day and age where technology and social media is making life more transparent then the likelihood of folk doing that is getting fewer… slightly. That or they are getting sneakier. 

On the flip side he’s described the live to work in as;

“their lives centre on their work or careers and that achievement in their professions is a major source of satisfaction” 

Which makes me feel a bit sad that the live to work ‘section’ if you will is solely around work as the majority of ones satisfaction from life. I think if you solely live to work you’ll find yourself leading a lonely life in the years to come when you retire. 

The value on human companionship is a necessity.

I feel both the live to work, work to live have both their upsides and down sides. However, I can feel that I am getting into the live to work category.

If they both have their ups and downs they why be one or the other? Just be both.


Well… this is were I am going to come across as a weakling.. or weird or OTT but this is my truth.

I can not seem to get a reliable source of human companionship. By that I mean I think I make these great friends and I am so excited to make new uni friends or work friends only to find out that as soon as uni finishes I never see or hear from them again. (If we didn’t regularly go out or hang out outside of uni that I totally get it, why keep in contact with someone you didn’t keep in contact with at uni? So am not too b bothered by those folk.) Its the ones I used to spend quality time with that now I never see.

For instance, I had 2 really close friends at uni, J.F and M.D. We hung out all the time at uni and went on numerous nights out. Now that uni is over do I see them? Nope. Did we have a fall out cause I/they were being a dick? Not to my knowledge. They just stopped hanging out. I felt like I was getting ghosted by my friends. I was sad, I was confused. And now I am indifferent. I wish them well, and I see they are doing good which is awesome. I don’t want people to not succeed. I just don’t understand how someone can chop from being bffs/friends-forever vibe to never speaking to them again.

Its this confusion that I don’t want.

I would much rather concentrate on my work. Now that I have work I can pour my all into it and in turn fully invest in my side hustle; my blog. As Gary Vee said in one of his Podcasts you should be putting at least 35% of your profit into your business and making it grow/getting it better. Do I get a profit from my blog? Nope of course not lol I am still a beginner.

But now that I have a wage coming in I can dedicate part of that to my blog and making it better. 

That doesn’t mean to say I’ll never see the friends I do have. Because the ones I have and I see I love very much. I am so appreciative of all the supportive messages and help that they have given me and I can not express how much it means to me. 

I am not used to loyalty. This isn’t a woe is me thing this is a fact. I don’t make a lot of friends, or the ones I do make they don’t stick around long. I either piss them off, or they randomly stop speaking to me, or (on a rare occasion) I stop speaking to them because they’ve gone too far or it could be something as natural as life. Life gets in the way, people get busy, they then get annoyed that contact wasn’t as good as it used to be and then hold a grudge. Which I cba with.

If I or anyone that I have met ever lost contact through basic life getting in the way then I am more than happy to meet and chat about old times, go on new adventures. That part is fun. I don’t hold grudges that way. Shit happens. 

I want a mixture of live to work, work to live.

I want to be a career woman. 

As I said in my previous post, the back up plan, if I plan to be a single mum raising a kid on my own by the time im 35 years old then I have 5 years to get my shit together and create a reliable income for myself and my future child. So we won’t be lacking. 

I don’t want to worry about how far the next pay will get us, I don’t want to think fuck my kid will be without because I didn’t plan ahead enough.

I know sometimes single parenthood isn’t planned and its super hard to save in advance. But because I personally know my deadline I need to get my act together.

This my own personal mission, the work/life balance is interchangeable and its important to know yourself. Sometimes there will be periods in your life where you’ll need to be one above the other to get to where you want to go. And I think I am at that stage right now. 

Are you a mixture of both too? if so how do you do it? 

Here are the other articles I’ve read in case your interested in reading further;

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