How many times have you wished there were more hours in the day?
Like most working people, are you trying to do too much in both your personal and professional life?
More accurately, you probably do have too much on your plate
Todays world struggles in finding work-life balance. The obligations of your job can cross over into your personal life, as you take business calls while you’re supposed to be with friends and family. Or at work you feel the need to take those personal calls and texts-every one of them.
If the lines between your professional and personal worlds have become cblurred, stop. Step back. Take some me time to sort it out.
To get you started, here are 7 steps to finding work-life balance.
#1. How to say “Yes” or “No”.
When you say “yes” to someone, are you saying “no” to yourself? “Yes” might involve a commitment that piles on additional responsibility. Take a step back to think about your answer and really put some thought and logic around it.
Will saying yes open up opportunities for you to shine? Will saying no allow you to continue to deliver the results to drive your success? After you give yourself the time to reflect have a transparent dialogue with the person making the request from you. Transparency leads to better communication and a deeper understanding for everyone involved, and it builds TRUST.
#2. Create (and stick to) boundaries.
We are in a connected world–too much so. It is so important to draw the line between personal and professional time and responsibilities. Don’t take business calls on weekends. If you condition clients and co-workers that you’re unavailable at certain times, they’ll refrain from relying on you when they shouldn’t. There was a time in business when that line was never crossed. Downtime is critical to freeing your mind and body from the stressors that inhibit creative thinking. Our brains are not meant to be “on” all the time. TMI from every direction takes you away from being in the moment with your family, yourself, with nature, there are missed opportunities to see the joy in your world.
Being in the moment at work is equally important. Educating your friends and family to respect work boundaries is important, as well as disciplining yourself to prevent overusing your personal device in the workplace. Being in the moment will allow you to deliver the results to drive your success and the Company’s success. When you adhere to and respect your own boundaries; others will too.
#3. Manage distractions.
How can we possibly manage to all of the distractions this new age of technology is filled with them; all moving at warp speed!
- Schedule time commitments.
- Designate time for answering emails and texts.
- Create a block of time when you’re available for meetings and conference calls—and stick to the schedule.
- Determine when you will attack your commitments
- Set a timer (yes your personal device is good to use here).
- Attack your commitments.
- Feel the anxiety dissipate.
- Use your now open and creative brain to create and play!
The biggest distraction is your technology. Where is your smartphone or tablet right now? I expect it’s within reach. Is it next to your bed when you drift off to sleep?
Stepping away from technology, including electronics allows you to disconnect from the things that can throw off your work-life balance. Do you really need to check your phone or email every ten minutes. Take a break from social media. In his book, “Hamlet’s Blackberry”, author William Powers refers to technology disconnection as an “Internet Sabbath”. Bless yourself with this freedom on a regular basis.
Looking for a restful night of sleep? Turn off your electronics at least an hour before bedtime. The blue light stops the production of melatonin, a hormone that prompts sleepiness. The sleep interruptions caused by the information you get from your smartphone at night can cost $2,280 in lost productivity for each American worker annually.
Go vintage, read a book or magazine at bedtime, read to your children–yes paper can be a good thing, listen to music , meditate , give thanks.
#5. Prioritize downtime.
“Me Time” is critical to enjoying life-work balance. Engaging in an activity that feeds your passion is a mood-lifter. You become energized when you’re relaxed. Don’t rob yourself of the life-affirming moments that allow you to experience the pleasure of leisure time. It can be 15 minutes a day of uninterrupted, alone time, or a power nap. Maybe you have a hobby that you keep putting off because of time constraints. The joy you experience will restore your focus, energy and creativity!
#6. Eliminate time-suckers.
We all have people and activities in our lives that occupy time without any return on that investment.
- Do you have a needy friend or family member constantly calling, texting, or showing up?
- Is there a co-worker who relies too heavily on you and isn’t pulling his weight?
- What about committees, meetings, and regular events that have no real value?
Make a list of the time-suckers in your life—personal and professional. How much time do they take out your day or week? Add it up.
Then think about how you can use that time more productively. This awareness should help.
#7. Get up and move.
Physical activity stimulates your limbic system in your brain, which manages your emotional well-being.
Get up and stretch. Walk around. Take slow deep breaths, and exhale slowly. Then go rock your world!