These days, our “always on” work ethic threatens more than just our free time. With our health—mental and physical—at stake, and with expectations at an all-time high, establishing a healthy work-life balance is becoming more and more difficult. To maintain our sanity and stay effective at what we do, it’s more important than ever to find time to disconnect and reconnect with the things that make us feel good.
Even high-achievers, for whom a seven-day workweek plus daily overtime is a badge of honor, need to refocus occasionally. Studies have shown, time and time again, that we are not operating at our peak if we ignore the need for balance.
While what works for one might not work for another, there is always a way to make it happen. Here are a few tips that are meant to stimulate further discussion as to how you can achieve better work-life balance for yourself and support your employees or peers to do the same.
1. Define what you need and then make sure you get it
Make a list of the things that are important to you in life. Prioritize your list in order of importance and make adjustments to your schedule to accommodate these needs. They might include sleeping eight hours a night, getting exercise, helping your kids with their homework or spending quality time with your significant other. If you need to leave work at a certain time to accomplish any of these goals, make sure it happens. Chances are your work will still be waiting for you when you come back in the morning – and think about how much better you will feel when you don’t have the guilt of skipping these activities.
2. Set clear boundaries
When you respond to a client’s texts or emails late at night, over the weekend or when you’re supposed to be on vacation, you may be inviting their dependence on your availability. This can seriously encroach on your personal time and will eventually make you crazy. Set clear boundaries and stick to them. Unless you are a doctor, you are probably not dealing with life-or-death situations, so don’t kill yourself to do favors for people who will probably start pushing those boundaries the moment they have the chance. Remember – you matter too!
3. Optimize your workflow
Many a-type personalities fall into the trap of trying to control every little thing on their desk. In reality, your time is valuable. Repetitive tasks can be automated or delegated, freeing you up for higher-value activities and hypothetically leaving you more time for yourself at the end of the day. Look at the things that you do daily: are the things you do really the best use of your time? If not, look at ways you can make these processes more efficient.
Disconnecting is important: from your technology, from your phone, from your schedule. Whether you do it for a couple of hours a day, a whole day every week, or for the weekend, it will provide you with a much-needed separation from your day-to-day routine. When you come back to it, you will be able to approach your work from a refreshed perspective.
If you live and work in Weston, Florida, we would love to hear how you approach work-life balance. Give us a call or drop by for a tour today.