The idea of a work-life balance means that the two can and should be equal components. However, sometimes work seems to overtake life, or vice versa, and other times both things are happening so quickly it’s hard to determine which deserves your attention. If you find yourself tipping the scale on either end, you’re probably losing control, and that’s not balanced or healthy. Achieving a work-life balance will help you feel more at ease and less like you need more than 24 hours in the day. To start on the journey to equilibrium, follow these 6 tips.
1. Develop a routine. Your life is already running on a routine, whether you realize it or not, so hopefully this one won’t be too hard to implement. Giving more structure to that routine will make you feel more organized and in control of what’s happening on a day-to-day basis. Wake up and go to sleep around the same time, start packing your lunch the night before, check your emails in the morning, afternoon and before you leave for the day. Routine is good. It creates healthy habits, and can help you determine which habits aren’t so healthy.
2. Prioritize. Not all tasks are created equal. Determine what items on your “to do” list must get done, and which can be put off until later. Prioritizing your time should also help you concentrate on the task at hand versus trying to do multiple things at once. Also, remember that it’s okay to just say no. If someone approaches you about assistance with a project or carpooling to soccer practice, don’t be afraid to admit that it doesn’t work for your schedule.
3. Unplug. You’re probably thinking, “What? Unplug? Like turn off my cellphone? No.” Yes. Turning off from the outside world allows you to focus on other things. We’re not talking all day or every day, but designate some time that you can be completely technology free. Maybe you stay off social media before 8 a.m. or refrain from checking your email after you leave work. (If there’s an emergency someone will find a way to get ahold of you – promise!) Start with once a week and work your way up from there. You can do it!
4. Take time for you. You need and deserve self-care, so do something every day for yourself. Bring your favorite coffee creamer to work, read a book, and the most important, exercise! Exercise is a proven, effective stress reducer. It helps elevate your mood by pumping endorphins through your body. You find time to eat, sleep, take a shower, and exercising is just as essential to your everyday well-being.
5. Ask for support. Don’t be afraid to tell your friends and colleagues that you’re experiencing stress in your life. They may be able to help take some things off your plate or offer some great advice. Sometimes just venting about your dilemma can help you feel better.
6. Be present at work and in life. Whether you’re at work or at home, be there. Be attentive and enjoy whatever moment you’re currently experiencing.
How do you live a well-balanced life?