Learning when to disconnect from your professional and personal life is sometimes hard. This realisation didn’t hit me until I hosted my brother and his wife to stay over in my apartment for a couple of days this past week. As a psychologists she does have the tendency to read a little deeper into human behavior, but after her multiple observations and analysis of me doing things that come naturally to me, I realised that it is a little bit of an occupational hazard at times; when you apply things you learnt at work to your personal life.

It was about the third time I had wiped the watermark off the table when we were having a conversation, but when she analysed it as me wanting to take control or something along those lines, rather than me just not wanting a watermark left on my precious coffee table is when I told her to calm down and not everyone is a patient of hers.

This got me thinking, how many times have I acted as a recruiter after working hours, in social situations and pretty much all day every day. From instantly asking people questions about what they do, their day to day at work, dishing out job advice, thinking where else they could be suitable for in terms of jobs, my mind is always working and is always in work mode.

However, after being on the flip side of that and having been analysed by a psychologist and not liking the feeling very much, I realised I might always be on recruiter mode all the time. A quick check with my friends confirmed that! Although all my friends are predominantly recruiters, some have the skill of shutting off after work and in social settings, whilst I am still developing that and refraining from asking too many questions.

Thus, it is important to remember to differentiate your personal and professional life, it is great to apply principles of both in your life, and there are often times when friends will seek your advice professionally. However, you don’t want to come across too entrenched in your working life where friends constantly feel like they are speaking to a recruiter rather than you as a person and friend.

My one advice for everyone there is to leave their work personas at work and socialise as themselves, give people a chance and listen/look at everything with a fresh pair of eyes and know you for you.