Not so long ago a friend asked me how she could muster the self-control to drink less and eat more nutritiously on a regular basis. After a long day of work at a desk, bad weather (she lives in Belgium) and a hectic commute she is too wiped out to prepare a proper meal and would rather dine on a bag of chips and several glasses of wine while collapsed on the couch in front of the latest Danish crime drama. Does this scenario – or some version of it – sound familiar? Losing weight, quitting smoking and other wellness promoting activities are among the hardest changes to achieve.
We have all heard that for many moving ranks between death of a loved one and divorce as one of the most stressful life events. Yet after countless relocations I have come to appreciate, even look forward to, the opportunities for rejuvenation that changing homes prompts. By allowing us to pare down and prioritize, every move is an opportunity to get essential. I had to haul a lot of stuff around in my immediate post college life –across the country and back, out of the country and back and across the city and back– for these realizations to gradually emerge, until the day I had my Eureka moment.
We are all plugged up. Cell phones, blackberries, I-Pads, I-Pods and other electronic devices have erased the boundaries between work life and private life. At dinner we can switch from talking to our children about their day at school to answering an urgent message from a colleague in another time zone, to twittering about the awesome wine we’re drinking to skypeing with our boss whose away on a business trip. In the morning we immediately check one or all of our gadgets to make sure that even before we’ve had our first cup of green tea we feel a sense of urgency or dread that indicates that our workday has begun. It is now literally impossible to leave work at the office.