For Those of You Genetically Unable to Slow Down

Most people in the world carve out time from their personal lives to make some time for work.  They HAVE to work to pay the bills, so…

And then there are those people who are genetically wired or nurtured or natured to work.  A lot.  These are the folks who have to try to carve out time from work to have a personal life.

I’m talking to you.

You do hate slavery, right?

I’m a big believer in freedom, and I’ve discovered through COVID that I care about freedom more than many, or even most people I know.

But many of us who supposedly value freedom are actually slaves.  Slaves to ourselves.  Slaves to our businesses.  I hate the thought of being enslaved to anything.  But to be enslaved to your work? To your job? This is wrong and crazy.

I had a guy mention to me awhile back that he once had a job that was so frenetically busy and stressful that he actually wished he could be diagnosed with a terrible disease so he’d have an excuse to not go to work!  And he made great money and was on a great career path!  And he hated going to work.

If you work all the time, you may actually be a substandard performer

When you can’t be home for dinner; always saying no to friend’s events; having no time for friends or family; you’re a slave.  But you may also be showing your weakness as a leader.  Often this kind of behavior shows up other problems like:

  • Weak delegation skills
  • Poor planning
  • Poor modeling to your teammates and younger people
  • Chronic exhaustion so you’re not as sharp as you should be

Carving out time for other parts of your life

My dad was a passionate workaholic.

However, he always came home at 4:30 and was with the family for dinner.  Then he’d take a (very) quick nap on the couch, and often go back to work when he woke up.

Having a successful work life and crossing the finish line alone is not a win.

You make work appointments.  How about home appointments?

Block it out in your calendar.   Decide that there are blocks of time where you are unavailable.  Go screen free for a few hours.  You train people how to treat you, and if they know you always answer, they’ll always call.  Once you build some (appropriate) boundaries into your life, they’ll realize it can probably wait until morning.

I had coffee with a guy who built a pretty large business and sold it, and at the end of the day still had a wife and family who loved him.

He told me that his secret was time blocking.  He was always home for dinner, and he always took Sundays off.  At times it was hard and took  lots of discipline, but he did it.

The graveyard is filled with indispensable people.

Getting ahead is about getting started!  Do something different this week!

Trevor head shot in office 1

Trevor Throness is a speaker, consultant, and author of “The Power of People Skills.”  He is also co-founder and senior instructor at

Find more about “The Power of People Skills” here:


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