The Proof
Report 3 Small.png

The Work-Life Balance Paradox

Report No. 3.png

In Issue No. 24, M13 Co-Founder Courtney Reum notes that his life’s motto is "Never stop being curious." Endless curious is critical early in your life because it leads you directly to work you're passionate about. Curiosity has allowed me - and many of my peers - to pursue our passions relentlessly. In adopting this motto and spending time on projects I'm passionate about, work started to feel like play. It sounds great on the surface, I know. But sometimes your curiosity takes over your life, what then?

What happens when work becomes so entertaining (and addicting) that you start neglecting other parts of your life - travel, art, music, culture, friends, and even family. Report No. 3 asks a deeply personal question that I'm currently grappling with: How do find a work-life balance when work feels like play? Report No. 3 attempts to get at the root of this question.

How do you find a work-life balance when work feels like play?

“Find Your Passion.”

In an infamous Twitter thread by Naval Ravikant on wealth creation, he writes, “Specific knowledge is found by pursuing your genuine curiosity and passion rather than whatever is hot right now.” Naval argues that building specific knowledge, a critical factor in the process of wealth creation, “will feel like play to you but will look like work to others.”

Tim mike maples interview it's a fun game 67 tim ferriss show

It’s not always easy - even if you love it. Needs to be said, still can be extremely hard before a minor breakthrough. It’s a slog at times, but always exciting. I’m always more curious with more opened questions than when I started.

The trouble with this is that I continue working on it on weekends and nights. I've found that if I casually make plans for something I really like to do - a Sunday hike in the Marin Headlands with a friend I need to catch up with. Sounds great, I'm on board - but without a concrete plan in place I revert to play. Hit a coffee shop nearby, power up my Mac, and start grinding. Trouble referring not to productivity and getting shit done, but I can’t stop - it’s genuinely too interesting.

Feels like a video game, which people also tend to play on nights and weekends. Apt analogy in this case <>

The Important Things in Life

So, the trouble comes into play when I start to neglect other parts of life. You know, the things that matter. Art, travel, music, food, culture, friends. It needs to be planned in advanced for my type A always on brain. If it's not planned, ill just keep playing in my video game - to continue that analogy.

Even more pressing concern, those other parts of your life are essential to keep learning, to maintain a strong influx of ideas outside of your close peer group and industry bubble

Protection. Allocate value to these activities.

I'm writing this with the hope that others might resonate and offer advice for better solutions. I definitely need some.