Sometimes, it seems that BTS never has any free time to rest as they continually release new music, appear in promotions and interviews, and film Run BTS! and music videos. Despite this, the group emphasizes self-love, which also means they understand how important self-care is.
Jin talked about how after “Dynamite” became No. 1 on Billboard Hot 100 chart, he felt pressured. And, with “Butter” now being on the top of the chart for several weeks, you’d think he would feel even more pressure. Yet, he revealed that it’s quite the opposite. Since he does not have to do many in-person promotions and spends less time on the internet, he can feel more relaxed.
He also explained that he keeps a better and regular “routine now.” Despite a busy schedule, he recognizes how much a healthy work-life balance improves everything.
You could say that I cleared my mind, or that I worked through some things. I’m pretty sure I am doing better than then. I’m keeping a pretty regular routine now that I’m getting accustomed to commuting life, even though my schedule is sometimes a bit erratic. When I had to keep working without a single day off, I was sometimes really tired because I had things of my own to do after work before going to bed, but now after cycling through this routine for a while I’m a little healthier and I’m getting a little more sleep, too.
Jin has also taken active steps in improving his mental health by becoming vulnerable about his true feelings of depression with the solo song “Abyss.” He described the song’s release as a “relief” to finally be able to talk about what’s “inside” rather than pretend to be happy all of the time. Jin also recognizes the need to take time off when needed.
I thought that sort of exercise was right for me, but if this doesn’t resolve anything, I’ll try something else, and then something else. If I’m having a hard time, I can ask the label for some time off to do something else. I feel like just being able to do that, even, is a little bit helpful itself.
Throughout the interview, Jin talked a lot about how he feels nervous before performances and that before, he practices so much because he feels it takes him longer to learn lyrics and choreography than others. He said, “Practice is honestly a burden, though.” When BTS are working on a new song, Jin explained that he would practice for 4-5 days to get the “hang of it.”
Interviewer Myungseok Kang recognized the immense amount of hard work and time Jin spends working. So, he added, “Your work-life balance must also be important, too. It’s difficult to practice beyond a certain amount of time every day without having some time to relax.” Jin replied, “Exactly.”
Like I said, my skills are lacking when it comes to memorizing lyrics, but I think I have other abilities that cover up for what I lack. In fact, I enjoy constantly memorizing things like that. My gift is my ability to enjoy practicing repeatedly, so if I somehow succeed before the deadline, I give myself praise. (laughs) Practicing takes me a long time, so I just decided to treat it as one big project. The way I do it is, when I say it’s time for a break, it’s time for a break, and I rest to my heart’s content.
Myungseok reminded Jin of having said previously in ARMY Corner Store that the measure of your satisfaction is the degree to which you can pass your day meaninglessly. But, is someone in the biggest boy band able to relax and have free time? Jin explained that, in the Korean culture, it’s difficult because everyone expects productivity from you 24/7.
Koreans my age have no choice but to self-improve these days. You have to improve your qualifications, learn things, and people even tell you your hobbies have to be productive, even though they’re hobbies. After being taught that way since I was young, I think I need to follow through on that somehow. I feel like I have to do something productive, even when I’m trying to take a break.
Despite these societal pressures, Jin recognizes that taking time off for self-care is just as important as being productive. So, he attempts to rest a lot when he does have the opportunity.
But if I don’t do a single thing and just loaf around in bed, or do some unproductive, unnecessary activity, I actually end up feeling satisfied. Go from sleeping to waking up, waking up to eating, eating to sleeping again. Wake up from sleep and suddenly want to watch TV, and go watch it. If there’s nothing good on TV, play a game, then look at the clock, and if it’s late, sleep. I think everyone needs days like this.
Having such a busy schedule only makes you want to do nothing when you have that off day to yourself. And that’s especially the case for Jin. Rather than feeling guilty during those rest periods, he emphasized the importance of relaxation and self-care.
When I’m not working, all I really want to do is something I enjoy for myself. In that case, people might wonder why you’re doing things that won’t help you in life, but I think that time’s important for everyone. Society is always seeking out the things that are useful. And that’s good, too, but for our own sake, I think we require time to find stability in our own minds, even if it looks useless in the eyes of others.
So, rather than overworking, remember to take some time for yourself and relax. It’s what Jin would want for you too!