All of us lead hectic lives. Personally, I work full-time, manage my own business, and am responsible for two children (aged 17 and 11), a husband, the household, and various administrative tasks. I never anticipated receiving so many emails from school, and there seem to be endless activities that require transportation, such as boxing, Taekwondo, and part-time work for our eldest. I often feel like a chauffeur. I eagerly await the day when he learns to drive, which will make things much easier!
In today’s fast-paced and competitive world, achieving a work-life balance is more important than ever. We all know that work is an essential part of our lives, but it should not be the only thing that defines us. Having a good balance between work and personal life can help us lead happier and healthier lives.
In this blog, I thought I’d share some practical tips that have personally helped me achieve a more favourable work-life balance.
Make a list of your top priorities and make sure that you allocate enough time to each one. This will help you stay focused and avoid wasting time on things that are not important.
Learn to Say No
Do you feel that you are using your time efficiently? Are there tasks that you are doing unnecessarily which could be delegated to someone else who is better suited to handling them? It’s essential to learn to say no to things that are not a priority. If you don’t have time for something, don’t be afraid to decline politely. Saying no can help you avoid unnecessary stress and overload.
It’s easy to get caught up in work and technology, but it’s important to unplug and disconnect from time to time. Turn off your phone, computer, and other devices during your leisure time to help you relax and recharge. I also make sure, when working from home, to have a designated workspace that allows me to close the door at the end of the day and disconnect from work. Even before having a dedicated home office, I would always tidy up my workspace and move everything out of sight to prevent mental distractions in the evening. This way, I can relax and shift my focus to other aspects of my life after work hours.
Reading is a good way to switch off and disconnect from technology for me too – I challenge myself to read a target amount of books each year (using the Goodreads app); a mix of business related and fiction books.
Taking breaks throughout the day helps me stay energised and focused. I make an effort to incorporate breaks into my daily routine, which typically involve engaging in some form of exercise for at least 30 minutes. Depending on my mood, I might participate in an online combat class, go for a run, or take a leisurely walk while listening to my favourite podcast. Lately, I’ve been enjoying comedic podcasts like Rob Beckett and Josh Widdicombe’s “Lockdown Parenting Hell.” Despite being incredibly busy, I always make time for these breaks as they provide a valuable opportunity to unwind and reset my mind.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help or support from friends, family, or colleagues.
Having a support system can help you manage stress and achieve a better work-life balance. It’s perfectly okay to acknowledge when you are feeling stressed or struggling to cope. You may discover friends or colleagues have been in a similar situation and learn how they’ve coped. Mental health is a topic that we no longer shy away from discussing.
Ultimately, a healthy and happy life depends on achieving a work-life balance. By setting priorities, learning to say no, switching off, taking breaks, and seeking support, you can better balance your work and personal life.
Why not join the conversation and share your tips on how you achieve a work-life balance? I would love to hear your thoughts!
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