How to Make Your Work-Life Balance Better
How many times have you thought about tossing your alarm clock out the window? How often have you read one of those funny memes about sitting outside work and debating whether to run away and identified with it a bit too much? The fact is, people need a work-life balance, but in a world where we are constantly connected to the rest of the world, it can be difficult to separate professional life from personal life. Use these ideas to help you recharge and run your work and home lives more efficiently.
Especially when you run your own business, it can be hard to set boundaries. Many new business owners tend to think they need to be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week for their suppliers, partners, employees or clients, but the result is often quick burnout and possibly even a failing company. Set boundaries. Create a schedule of hours. You can even have evening and weekend hours if you want but do set a closing time and stick to it. If you say you won’t accept business calls after 10:00 p.m., don’t accept them. Make it clear that you should not be contacted unless it is a true emergency. This gives you time to spend with family, read a book or even just recharge with a bit of extra sleep.
Manage Energy Over Time
The biggest challenge to work-life balance is understanding the difference between time and energy. Just because one person works best at 8:00 a.m. doesn’t mean you will. Pay close attention to your personal body clock and use it as a guide for when you will be most productive. If you happen to be a morning person, great; if not, schedule your most important meetings or tasks for the afternoon or even the early evening when you feel most energized and ready to work.
You don’t need to toss every task you hate onto another person (even if it’s tempting sometimes), but you do need to ask for help. Maybe that means hiring someone to cover certain tasks for the business. Perhaps it means paying a professional cleaner or even hiring someone to cook meals for you on occasion at home. The reality is you can’t do it all. You can and should expect your family to help in the home and can and should hire people to assist with work as needed.
Remember, nobody is perfect, and you shouldn’t expect to be, either. If you try these tips and they don’t work for you, don’t give up. Try other ways to manage your work-life balance. Even if you just spend 10 minutes per day sitting in silence or reading your favorite web comic, it’s a start. Through trial and error, you’ll find the right balance.