Here are our top tips for making work/life balance a reality.
Figuring out how to keep boundaries between work and home life is no easy task. But lacking work/life balance can cause serious damage; according to the Mayo Clinic, you put yourself at risk of chronic fatigue, health issues and damaged relationships when you spend too much time at work. And if you don’t put in enough effort on the job, well, we know how that ends.
At work, if you continuously take on more and more work, your colleagues will assume you are able and willing to keep going at a pace that may be hurting your personal life. You can prove your talent and ambition without being a doormat—be sure to talk to your supervisor when your workload gets too big to handle in your standard work day.
Make appointments, for everything
If you wouldn’t blow off a team check-in or a client meeting, you shouldn’t blow off your weekly yoga class or dinner with your best friend. Be sure to schedule time for things that rejuvenate you—not only is it important for your well-being, but studies show that happy employees are up to 20 percent more productive!
Say no as needed
Some of us find it difficult to say no, whether it’s about taking on another project at the office or when a neighbor asks for yet another favor. Expert Duke Robinson says, “Saying yes when you need to say no causes burnout. You do yourself and the person making the request a disservice by saying yes all of the time.” Next time you’re deciding yea or nay, ask yourself what saying yes will cost you in terms of time, money and sanity and weigh it carefully against the benefits.
Many employers now have flexible schedule options. You might try working from home one day a week and repurposing your commute time for exercise or starting your day earlier so you can be home in time for family dinner. And don’t forget: you are given vacation days for a reason, so be sure to use them for yourself!
Care for yourself the way you care for others
You would never let your kids go hungry or encourage your parents to skip doctors appointments, but when your work/life balance is out of whack, self-care is the first thing to go. Set some priorities for taking care of yourself.
This article first appeared on ZLife.
Photo: mije_shots, ThinkStock