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

Hi Alayna, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
My thoughts on work/life balance have definitely changed over time. It’s always been sort of a hot topic for those of us who work in social since the industry demands 24/7 always-on attention. Platforms change every week, clients want and need to be the first to integrate the latest feature or hop on the latest trend. For a lot of industries, it’s taken over the bulk of customer service, with customers who expect instant turnaround time.

The pandemic forcing us into remote work just ignited that conversation. Because it’s always been difficult to carve out time away from social, but an office setting definitely helped distinguish a sense of “work time.” My idea of work/life balance has changed from always trying to force one, to accepting that it doesn’t really exist. (I’m aware how depressing that sounds, and I don’t mean it that way.) When I really get to thinking about it, part of me always goes back to work/life balance being a ploy to lure people into a company, especially one in a demanding industry. I always go back to thinking “What does work/life balance actually mean? A promise to simply respect your time?” So, I’m neither here nor there. I not 100% hustle culture, and I’m not bookmarking all the articles sharing the secrets to avoiding burnout either.

It’s something I’m constantly navigating because social is work, but social consumes a lot of time we set aside for life, too. Was I on Instagram all morning sourcing influencers for an upcoming campaign? Yes. Was I on Instagram all evening sending my friends my favorite memes? Also yes. I hate the idea that one whole part of my day gets filed under “work” and another, possibly shorter, portion gets called “life”.

My solution is to think of “life” as an umbrella term under which everything else happens – work, friends, romance, rest, etc. It’s not about separating them, it’s about incorporating each into the bigger picture while respecting the time that the others demand. You don’t have friends and life, a relationship and life, just like you don’t have work and life. Whether you like it or not (your job, the concept, both) most of us have to work well into our 60’s. I don’t want to spend a whole chunk of that very long time struggling to find a balance, I want to live life. Work is just another part of that.

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.
I’ve been a part of Mochee for seven years now. I never would have imagined that I’d enjoy my very first real job as much as I do to this day. What started as a part-time position has turned into a fulfilling career that I hope to continue for as long as I can. With social, it’s so easy to feel like you can’t keep up and your skills are quickly becoming outdated. Everything about social media strategy was drastically different in 2014, and equally as different in 2020. I’m always kept on my toes and always being challenged to answer emerging questions, figure out new platforms, make new predictions. As stressful as it can be, it’s just as rewarding. I NEVER stop learning. With every passing year, I always find myself looking forward to the growth I’ll experience. I keep a running list of things I want to master or focus on improving. At the end of every year, I look back amazed at what we accomplished and it’s the greatest feeling.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Our main office is in Miami, but I’ve been based on the west coast of Florida in St.Petersburg for the last 2 years. My family and my Mochee family are all still in South Florida so I go back often and it feels half like home, half like I’m visiting which is fun. Trips down south are just that much sweeter now – except for the traffic, I don’t miss the traffic. I always make sure to eat a ton of authentic Latin food – Pinolandia in Hollywood is always one of my first stops. If I’m going to celebrate something with my friends, I always try to sway them to make the plans at KYU in Wynwood where I have great memories of happy hours with my Mochee fam too. I also love the breweries in the F.A.T. Village area of Fort Lauderdale and the garden area of Rhythm + Vine is my favorite for day drinking.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My shoutout has to be dedicated to my team at Mochee, a team that I am beyond proud to be a part of. The support I get from every single one of my coworkers and mentors is unreal. Every day I’m more and more impressed with the results of our collaborative efforts, the things we’re able to produce together, and the fun we have while doing it. They’re also the #1 reason why work/life balance is so tricky for me to navigate. Because to consider them anything less than family just wouldn’t be right.

Website: https://mochee.com/

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

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/alayna-chotos-0b82b398/

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