I created this blog during a “dark night of the soul” moment. I had travelled back home for Christmas and I was so consumed by my erratic PhD life that I couldn’t relate to anyone from my family. I felt numb, anxious, and totally shattered in pieces. At that time, the blog was called “The Humanfulness Project” because I was literally looking forward to restore my own sense of humanity through blogging.
In February, I published my first post and I haven’t stopped since then. Writing in here was my escape, but also my salvation. While my colleagues were interested in publishing their articles on top psychology journals, I was more interested in teaching, sharing life stories, and mindfully savour a cup of coffee in my balcony. All the buzz around conferences, papers, and seminars didn’t make sense to me. The stress and pressure from my peers took a toll on me. Soon, I started to hate my entire PhD experience and all I wanted to do was to write about stress and work-life balance, topics that I had a chance to teach at the university as well. It was a big irony to be teaching on “work-life balance” when I saw myself deprived of such experience. That’s when I changed the name of my blog to “Work-Life Fitness”.
After many cycles of depression, hopelessness, frustration, and exasperation, I decided to leave academia after my PhD and take my blogging life more seriously. It was a hard decision because I love teaching, I love students, and I love doing research. However, I realised that the academic lifestyle was not for me, because I prefer to be happy than have a very prestigious academic role. So right now, I’m finalising the latest chapters of my thesis and I hope to submit it in December. After that, my plan is to finally create my own happiness. That plan includes:
- creating a free online Psychology school (already working on this!)
- volunteering in educational projects in Africa and Asia
- and the design of lifestyle programs to improve people’s quality of life
To help me stay inspired, I created the Wellbeing Manifesto, a set of affirmations which I want to live by from now on, and which I hope will inspire you too.