In today’s hectic world it can sometimes feel like work dominates our lives, but even if you love your job having a good work-life balance is the key to a happier existence.
It’s not always easy to get that balance right though so we've pulled together eight tips to help you lead a more fulfilling life.
1. Embrace The Off Button
In such a connected world it’s hard not to be glued to your gadgets, but weaning yourself off your devices can give you the freedom to really make the most of your time away from the office. Rather than going cold turkey, try making some small changes first like not bringing your mobile to the dinner table or going “unplugged” at the weekend. Small steps can help you put things into perspective.
2. Prioritise What Really Matters
Your time is your most precious commodity so to dispel the myth of perfectionism and realise that things might sometimes be “good enough” rather than perfect. This applies to both at work and at home. Give yourself a break and let go of the idea that every aspect of your life has to be perfect.
3. Stick To One Calendar
Don’t try to have two separate calendars: a work calendar and a personal calendar. Instead have one calendar for all of your commitments so you can see immediately what personal commitments you already have. By being able to quickly see when you might be double booked you’ll be able to avoid clashes where you’ll either have to let down your family and friends or your work.
4. Work Smarter, Not Harder
The “work more, sleep less” attitude that some advocate as the key to success only really works in the short term as being tired limits your ability to make decisions. Prioritise tasks, allow a set amount of time per task, and avoid getting distracted by less productive activities.
5. Exercise. In The Morning…
Although it might sound quite drastic (particularly if you’re friendlier with your duvet than your running shoes) doing some low intensity exercise, such as yoga, first thing in the morning can help focus your mind for the day ahead.
6. Be Open About Your Needs
For work and life to be balanced, it needs to be just that, balanced. Don’t be afraid to leave work at 5pm on the dot to make an important family dinner. Equally, sometimes work needs to take the driving seat so having an open dialogue with your line manager can help you achieve the correct balance.
7. Know When Enough Is Enough
There’s always one more email to reply to or one more problem that needs to be addressed at work, but know when it’s time to go home and come back to the issue tomorrow. After all, if you don’t respect your boundaries, you can’t expect other people to.
8. Start Small
You’re not going to be able to completely revolutionise your work-life balance overnight so make small changes until you’re happy with the way your life is heading. For example, try fitting in a gym session once or twice a week or switching your work mobile off when you leave the office in the evening and slowly build up to more progressive changes.
It’s easy to become engrossed in work, but leading a balanced lifestyle can help you be more focussed on what’s important and ultimately better inside and outside of work. Keep up to date with the latest thoughts on career advancement, job search, hiring and the work life balance by subscribing to our blog.