Q: I work in the surfing industry and help manage a professional surfer. I live near the beach in the same house where my office is located. My problem is that even though my job is ideal, by midweek I start finding it hard to focus. I surf about once a day, and that’s the only time I feel detached from work. How can I keep myself creative and, more important, focused?
A: Living where you work can be wonderfully convenient, but it also means you have to develop ways to separate your personal life and your work life. In your case, the one personal activity you engage in is the same activity you spend your work life involved with. To avoid burning out, you need some outside interests that have no connection to your job or your workplace. That means getting out of the house: Join an athletic club, take up a hobby, or pursue some nonsurfing activity like rock climbing, skateboarding, or cycling in your free time. Not only will this give you a break from your surfing-centric life, but you’ll also meet new people and have opportunities for different social interactions — which will make the surfing that much more invigorating when you do it.