Every day, after they unchain me from my desk, I walk out to my car (running would be an amateur move) and say a silent prayer thanking Zeus for my surviving another day.
Once I clear all the snow off the RAV, and then get the heat going long enough for it to be warm and toasty inside my vehicle, I slip out of my work skin.
I fold it up neatly, put it into a carefully sealed protective bag (you can get them cheap and in bulk on Amazon), and then tuck the package under the passenger seat until I need it again in the morning.
It’s kind of like how Clark Kent sheds his nerdy, reporter skin to reveal that the real him has been hidden underneath the whole time.
So I guess in that scenario, work me is Clark Kent, while real me is Superman.
But you get the point.
You’re probably able to relate to the idea of putting on a totally different persona for work. If that’s the case, then you don’t want to take that work version of you home.
It could mess with the whole time/space continuum if work you replaced real you.
You know how much Doc Brown disapproves when we even consider screwing with the space/time continuum.
If this concept confuses you, or it you work better with visuals aids, check out the episode of Seinfeld where George explains the consequences of what would happen if Relationship George and Independent George ever crossed streams.
George Costanza, Modern Philosopher.
Some might argue that it is a terrible idea to keep work stress bottled up inside, and that you need to talk about your day once you leave the office, to allow the steam out of the pot before it explodes.
I vehemently disagree.
I used to bring work home with me, and it rarely lead to anything good. The more I’d talk about it, the more upset I’d become as I relived the horror of my day.
The way I see it, if I’m not getting paid, then work should not be on my mind.
The only good thing I ever brought home from work was Rachel, and trust me, we did not waste our time together rehashing the work day. She had much better, more exciting ways, to distract me from whatever had bothered me back at the office.
So if you don’t have a sexy coworker to take home to make it all better, you need to shed your work skin, and leave it in the car.
As much as I hate being single and coming home to an empty house, it does make it easier to keep the work day from infecting my personal life.
With no one to ask me about my day, I don’t have an outlet, even if I wanted to talk.
Unless you truly love your job, and your work is your passion, then it does not deserve to take up more than a third of your day. If you’re lucky enough to get eight hours of sleep, that leaves you with only eight hours to be who you want to be, need to be, and wish you could be.
Let’s be honest, work might pay you for eight hours, but it takes up even more time than that with your unpaid lunch, the commute, and the time it takes to get ready.
Don’t give work a second more than it deserves. When you punch out for the day, shed your work skin!
However, it has been a very dry winter, so you might want to rub some lotion on your body. Just put it back in the basket when you’re done.
So if you’re the type of person who takes the day home with you, let me remind you that your employer is not paying you for those hours you’re spending stressing about your job.
Unless you plan to submit a bill for overtime hours owed to you, you’re stealing from yourself every second you let work creep into your private time.
Just give my plan a shot. If you don’t like the results, go back to doing it your way.
I have one final tip: When you do shed your work skin, be sure to fold it nicely before storing it for the night. It would be totally unprofessional to show up at the office the next day looking all wrinkled and unkempt.
Good luck and enjoy your free time!