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Success and Satisfaction: Walking the Fine Lines of Life

Finding the difficult balance between work and leisure can lead to a healthy and productive lifestyle, whether it’s in college or your professional career.

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As project deadlines and final exams are right around the corner, students dream of a day filled with doing nothing — absolutely nothing.

Marathons of “Friends,” romantic comedies, action movies, “Lord of the Rings” or just sleeping the day away.

However, does this actually bring satisfaction for the day?

No.

The most satisfying days involve work, not lazy days filled with folly.

Margaret Thatcher, Britain’s former prime minister, believed in the satisfaction of work as well.

“Look at a day when you are supremely satisfied at the end. It’s not a day when you lounge around doing nothing; it’s a day you’ve had everything to do and you’ve done it,” Thatcher said.

Think about it, how proud do we feel after finishing a long, tedious project with an outstanding ending?

For a moment all is well, and sleep is much more sweet.

For some, actually working is not the issue. Instead, some people never escape from work, logging late and weekend hours on a regular basis.

There is nothing wrong with going the extra step, but constant work is an issue.

These may be the ones with their smartphones in hand consistently throughout the day — even when the day is Sunday.

Answering emails, researching the market, reading the latest articles from a trade magazine, the smartphone has no storage space for silly games like “Angry Birds” or “Temple Run.”

First ones to arrive, last ones to leave, those around these worker bees wonder if six venti Americanos a day can actually substitute sleep and rest.

Unfortunately, the body cannot live on Starbucks coffee alone, and rest is necessary for real success.

However, kidnapping workaholics’ iPhones and forcing a “Law and Order” marathon upon them will not create effective rest.

Prying movie marathoners’ eyes away from glaring television screens and forcing nonstop labor upon them will not create a day of satisfaction.

If these methods do not work, what will?

A balance between work and quality rest is suggested in a Huffington Post article, “What The Most Successful People Do With Their Weekends,” by Laura Vanderkam.

When working, commit to quality work. Don’t confuse work time for leisure time, so resting can actually be a stark opposite.

Have dinner without the iPhone and actually have some time off. While working constantly may seem to be the ticket to success, the quality of work decreases without rest.

Don’t stop productivity just because of rest.

Go for a run, tend a garden, meet a friend over coffee or read that book collecting dust on your bookshelf.

Go ahead, watch television or surf the Internet, just limit your time.

Spend time with those you love, time that builds relationships.

Rest, not laziness, is essential, and necessary to thrive in today’s fast-paced society.

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Coral Christopher

Coral Christopher, editor-in-chief of MBU Timeline, is a senior majoring in public relations and communication studies with minors in political science and journalism. Christopher recently led the rebranding and launch of the new mbutimeline.mobap.edu site. When Christopher is not editing or writing, she interns for the University Communications office at Missouri Baptist University, keeping up with Washington, D.C., or pretending to be C.J. Cregg from “The West Wing.”

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