Bartenders make crazy good money, but the job comes with a price. In order to meet new people, create interesting drinks and make loads of money, bartenders often sacrifice sleep, a social life and their health. However, they can strike a balance between paying the bills and staying happy. They just have to put in effort to avoid burnout.
Bartending starts with good shoes
According to Imbibe Magazine, Marvin Allen picked up bartending, intending to stick with it for about six months while he devised a plan for his next career move. He found that he enjoyed the money and people and has been with it ever since.
Twenty-five years later, Allen has more than enough expertise to guide bartenders on how to remain healthy and enjoy a work-life balance in the hectic industry. He moves about the bar efficiently and instinctively, in the same manner that a bartender who's been around the block does, Imbibe pointed out.
"I make sure I have good shoes with good support," Allen told Imbibe.
When compared to more traditional careers, Allen's line of work is prevalent with perils. Stepping foot behind a bar is comparable to completing an obstacle course. The individual must dodge spilled drinks, broken glass and angry clients – all while moving at remarkable speed. The occupational hazards equate to slips, trips and falls, which make investing in proper equipment so important.
How to remain healthy
Tony Abou-Ganim, owner of The Modern Mixologist, explained to Imbibe that the job is "undeniably tough" on one's physique. The bending, reaching, shaking and lifting can leave someone feeling out of whack by last call. That's why slip-resistant mats and shoes are a bartender's best friends. They can get an employee through a shift unscathed.
To prep physically, bartenders should stretch, exercise and eat healthy in between shifts. These changes may sound simple enough, but they can be challenging for people who are exhausted from being on their feet constantly. Not to mention, restaurants are rife with temptations that would throw any well-balanced diet off-kilter. Bartenders must discipline themselves to resist getting caught up in the excitement of drinking and eating following a marathon of long shifts.
"Slip-resistant mats and shoes are a bartender's best friends."
Then, there's the ever-elusive work-life balance. As Forbes pointed out, it's a tough goal for anyone to reach because people are afraid that if they don't put in the hours, they could jeopardize their jobs. Still, marching on without acknowledging an issue can be harmful. Anyone, bartenders especially, stands to damage personal relationships, health and happiness.
Work-life balance is possible
Bartenders owe it to themselves and their employers to make time for family and hobbies despite a wonky schedule. Forbes quoted Marilyn Puder-York, Ph.d., author of "The Office Survival Guide," to explain how people can avoiding spreading themselves too thin.
"When I talk about balance, not everything has to be the completion and achievement of a task, it also has to include self-care so that your body, mind and soul are being refreshed," said Puder-York.
In the early days of bartending, it can be easy to fall into the trap of wanting to master everything. Who wouldn't want to be known as the best bartender in town? But even the greatest mixologists must recognize when enough is enough and re-work their schedules to find health and happiness outside of the job. Achieving a balance isn't always easy, but it's key to avoiding burnout.
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