Thursday, May 16, 2013

A Healthy Balance

Everyone talks about work life balance. I'd like to add in another factor that needs balancing, and that's health. When I started my job as librarian at a college that offers courses in alternative and complementary health, I started thinking about this issue a whole lot more. I'd just spent 2 years studying for a post-graduate diploma in information and library management whilst holding down two part-time jobs, with a stressful interlude involving re-locating from Japan to Perth. Over those 2 years my health suffered - i got backaches and neckaches from slouching in front of computers, and I put on weight. I was often tired, and my diet wasn't healthy.

When I finally finished my studies and got a regular 9-5 librarian job, I felt my unhealthy lifestyle had gone on long enough. My first priority was my back. I took myself along to the college's student practitioner clinic (the students are in their 3rd of 4th year of their studies) and signed up for weekly Swedish relaxation massages. During the first session I was shocked when the student commented on how tight and knotted my back muscles were - her supervisor said the same thing. I felt better after the massage. The clinic offers other therapies - I tried acupuncture to improve my circulation and to target my back pain, Chinese massage for the same, and Nutrition therapy to balance my diet. I signed up one of the students (already a qualified personal trainer) to help me work on my fitness and I started doing daily yoga at home with the help of an iPhone app. I walk to work. I got rid of my TV. I also became vegetarian. I've been doing all of these things for the past four months or so, and it has made such a difference!


Recently I've once again been spending quite a lot of time in front of the screens, at work and at home. I love getting on Twitter, doing online courses like 23 mobile things and another one starting soon called Swimming in the Information Ocean. I just love learning. But more than that, I value my health, so I'm determined to keep the balance and not get over-absorbed. I want to work hard, but I also want to enjoy my life, and I want to be smart and mindful in how I do it. There's still a lot of room for improvement!

An interesting link here about Work life balance in library school.

My favourite YOGA app. I do yoga with this app for 20 minutes every morning. So quick, easy and best off all, free :)


There's also a nice 'Exercises for Office Workers' poster from Deakin University here.

Stay healthy, people!