The busy pace of life can make it impossible to maintain a healthy work-life balance. With the introduction of technology like smartphones, tablets and laptops, it easier to have workers accessible around the clock. Many who fear losing their jobs or losing a promotion put in extra hours at the office or take their work home on the weekend. Statistics show that about 94% of working professionals average more than 50 hours a week, with half of these individuals saying they work more than 65 hours a week. Regardless of what the paycheck may indicate, such a lifestyle is extremely damaging to both physical and mental health. It hurts your relationships, your happiness and your overall health. Finding a work-life balance and relieving the stress that comes from an imbalance are efforts that require intentionality. Here are five effective ways to restore harmony in your life when it comes to the work-life balance.
Allow Yourself Imperfections
There are some individuals that are more intrinsically motivated than others, and these overachieving tendencies will usually present themselves during grade school, and as the individual develops hobbies, interests or gets a job. Most often, these people become perfectionists, striving to get every detail right and making sure their work is of the best quality. There are forces at work that can get in the way of achieving perfection, often creating a need to work harder or do more. This is a destructive habit that will burn your energy and leave you frustrated. If you can learn to let go of the burning desire to always be perfect and super-excel, you will enjoy life more and avoid early burnout.
Take Time to Unplug
Just as much as technology has made your life easier, it could also be contributing to your stress and fatigue. Checking your email after work or responding to inquiries after hours might be tempting since your device is handy, but it hurts you in the long-run. You are taking time away from your family and friends, and ultimately, you are taking much needed time away from yourself. Screen time, even though it may be productive, can contribute to poor sleeping patterns especially when a lot of it done once the sun goes down. You need to tell yourself that it is okay to unplug from your device and step back. If you continually do work after you have clocked out or gone home, you are setting up an expectation that you both can and will give your job more than they are asking from you. This isn’t always a good thing. Turn your phone off once you get home or leave your laptop at work. Turn off notifications and allow yourself some quality time.
Get Some Exercise
Being busy builds up stress, and when left unresolved, stress can create major health problems. Exercise is one way to both relieve stress and restore energy back into your life. If you have been filling up on unhealthy snacks and fast food on your way home, you have probably noticed a change in your waistline as well. This can contribute to fatigue, which might only make you work that much harder to overcompensate for. Exercise can help with this crisis, too. Use your lunch break to put in a brisk 15 minutes around the parking lot or do a few laps up and down the stairs. Park further away at work so you get some extra blood pumping in the morning to energize you. You can use your exercise time as a chance to collect your thoughts and regroup.
Get Away From Time-Wasters
Your life is busy, but chances are, you can weed some things out. Everyone’s time-wasters will look different, but getting off social media or video games 30 minutes before you turn in for the night can give 30 more minutes of sleep or time spent with your partner or kids. Avoid hanging out with people just for the sake of being polite. Give yourself extra time by taking it away from things that aren’t productive.
You may be feeling run down and run ragged, so up your nutritional intake with supplements. Restoring necessary vitamins and minerals to your diet can give you more energy. You can also use Young Living Essential Oils to promote an environment of relaxation and mental support. Lavender is known to be a calming scent, so diffusing some through the house when you get home can help your mind and body unwind.
Leaving yourself in this stressful condition will create health problems and cause you to burn out. Taking the time to unwind and remove yourself from the pressures of work for a few hours a day will do wonders for your work/life balance.