We had the good fortune of connecting with Aeriell Armas and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Aeriell, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
I used to think that work life balance meant that everything about my life was balanced at all times. What I realized is that true work life balance is accepting that there are seasons for different things. There are times where my work will take precedence because of important deadlines or projects; there are times when my personal life will be priority because of what or who needs my attention. Allowing myself to realize that not every aspect of life can be perfectly proportioned all the time has given me so much peace as I navigate busy grad school life.

The other thing that I found helpful is realizing that work is life; work is a part of my life. Thankfully, I love the work that I do and it’s as much personal as it is professional to me. When we hear that someone doesn’t have a “good” work life balance, we think that they must be a workaholic. At the same time, we live in a culture that conflates productivity and self-worth. The truth is that work-life balance is subjective. It looks different for each person – at least it should.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Although you might think that I’m most proud of being first in my family to pursue a PhD (a close second), a related endeavor that I’m most proud and excited about right now is being the creator behind Grad Life Grind. It’s a digital platform designed to help current and future graduate students succeed. Using everything that I’ve learned up until now as a grad student, I create content to help others who are pursuing higher education. It definitely hasn’t been easy navigating this platform and grad school at the same time, but it’s incredibly gratifying. Grad Life Grind has turned from passion project to small business in a really short amount of time; so I’ve been able to learn so much! From marketing to relationship building to time management, I’ve gained skills that will serve me will in my career as a psychologist but – more importantly – skills that will allow me to reach a broad audience of current and future graduate students who have many of the questions I once did.

What I want people to know about me and Grad Life Grind is that it’s a labor of love. Everything I do for this platform is heart-centered and I believe that others should do the same with whatever professional and personal paths they take. Grad Life Grind is also community-made; this platform would not exist without the people who have inspired and helped me to build it or without the people in my life that helped me get to graduate school (including my mother and other strong women who have and continue to mentor me).

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My mom! As I’m writing this, it’s actually my mom’s birthday. As a single mom and Latina immigrant, she raised me to be the driven woman I am. She taught me so many of the values and skills that I continue to use today in all I do.

Website: www.gradlifegrind.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/gradlifegrind/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/GradLifeGrind

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gradlifegrind

Youtube: https://youtube.com/channel/UCqJIsNkHUZqLntV5AamMeZg

Other: https://vm.tiktok.com/ZMda9F4b1/

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