The importance of having a positive work-life balance cannot be overemphasized. In the past, being a workaholic may have been a glamorized trait, often painting the picture of success. But today, the younger generations are taking back their power and are striving to create a better life beyond their jobs.
However, achieving the right balance between your career and the rest of your life is often easier said than done. Most of us have to work to survive. So, how can we ensure that we have a life outside of work without it compromising the career we work so hard for?
Here are some tips that can help you out:
Find a mentor
Whether it’s your boss, your friend, a colleague, or a certified life coach online, having someone to help you navigate the most important aspects of your life can make a huge difference. You can learn from their experiences, consider their opinions, or simply rely on them for emotional support. In times of adversity, your mentors can also help you determine the best course of action, which is ten times better than trying to do everything yourself.
Know when to say ‘no’
Some of us have a hard time saying ‘no’, whether to our boss, our friends, or our family. However, not knowing when to say ‘no’ can sometimes lead you to places that can negatively affect your physical, emotional, and mental health. More than that, it may cause adverse effects in your relationships with other people, sometimes even to the point of resentment.
That said, learn when to say the magic word. Whether it’s a boss asking you to take on another project or a friend pressuring you to go on a trip that you can’t afford, just say ‘no.’
Nurture your passions
Sadly, a common denominator among many working adults is the loss of their passions. For most of us, working, feeding ourselves, maintaining a household, and attending to other responsibilities leave no time for hobbies and passions. And for many, this can result in the loss of the things that bring you the most joy.
However, building a career shouldn’t be a hindrance to your passions. Even if you have a busy schedule, you can still probably find at least half an hour to read, work on your painting, or practice an instrument in between all the other things that you have to do. Or sometimes, maybe get rid of the least important activities in your calendar to make time for the things that you love. Instead of going to that non-mandatory work dinner party, go home and do something that will make you happier.
Ask your employer for options
Not everyone has work flexibility, but if it’s a viable option for you, ask your employer about flex hours, compressed workweeks, or working remotely. The more control you have over your work hours, the easier it will be to achieve a positive work-life balance. Furthermore, if you can shift to a work-from-home set-up, you can take advantage of the following benefits:
- Not having to commute every day
- Not having to wear work attire
- Being able to spend more time with yourself, family, and friends
- Having fewer distractions (no co-workers, no office noise, etc.)
- Being able to travel while working
- Customizing your own workspace for better productivity
- Saving more money
- Being able to cook more homemade meals
Get off work on time
Leave work on time and leave all work-related thoughts behind for the next day. Mute all your work chats and avoid checking your emails outside of work hours. Respect your boundaries, and other people will follow suit. After all; they are not paying you to work after you get off, so don’t bring your job home.
Put yourself first
It may sound selfish, but putting yourself first is a vital factor in living a balanced life. Moreover, you perform at your best if you are in your best state.
Here are the best ways to put this practice into action:
- Eat a balanced diet
- Get enough exercise
- Strive for enough sleep
- Go to regular check-ups
- Take care of your mental health
- Do stress-relief activities every day
- Practice good hygiene
- Treat yourself from time to time
- Know when to seek professional help
There is no perfect formula to achieving a positive work-life balance, but these strategies can significantly help. Furthermore, keep in mind that creating a work-life balance is a continuous process of reevaluating your priorities and making changes as needed. It won’t happen overnight, but it does become easier once you get the hang of it.