Greetings, true believers!
In an attempt to blog more regularly, I'm going to pour out some of my brain juices on a fun connection I talk about often and has even been mentioned on the episode I did for the Life/Work Balances Podcast earlier this year (check it out here). The idea is using Spider-Man as a foil for these discussions about how to find a more perfect balance in our lives.
Spider-Man is one of favorite superheroes for this reason, he always has to struggle with being Peter Parker and his job of being your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. He has to go to class, see his Aunt May, try to date Mary Jane (or Gwen Stacy), make sure to get some photos into J. Jonah Jameson, and just take care of himself. His workload is comparable to some of ours as student affairs people, so the juxtaposition gels.
Where I feel I can connect with the Spectacular Spidey is that he comes to a better balance when he doesn't put up a wall between his personal and "professional" lives. When he tells the people he cares about that he's this amazing hero, the walls come down and it is easier to live his life when he is authentic. The people in his life can help him and be there when he needs it.
I feel as though you can't ever really block off what's going on in your life from your work. They should blend together so that you are always genuinely you in everything that you do. Your passions should be on display and your colleagues able to know the true you since they see you all the time. This will lead to better work, I feel, since this schism would go away that you feel like you always have to have a mask on with as much as our work overtakes our lives. I say we flip it the other way around; bring your interests, passions, and transparent self into the work we do for students. It will be a refreshing change of pace.
I learn lessons and make connections from my geeky passions often, and I joke that I take my entertainment very seriously so I hope this was helpful to you all out there. So take this in, reflect, and go out being the most ultimate you that you were born to be!