Is spending every possible minute on your work the best thing for your business? Is it the best thing for your life? What about worklife balance? It seems logical that the more you put into work, the more you will get out of it, right? If you work 80 hrs a week, you will surely make more money and be more successful.
That may be true for a certain amount of time. However, eventually, we all know that this leads to burn out, and can actually have a negative effect on your business and even worse, your life and those around you. Working every minute of the day completely kills your worklife balance.
10 Tips for Worklife Balance
Here are a few tips to help prevent work from taking over your life.
1. Limit your work time
Many freelancers, entrepreneurs, and self employed workers consider themselves to always be on. This is an easy way to get completely burnt out. Ryan Carson from Carsonified thinks work weeks should be limited to four days. He feels that as long as you work smart for four days, you can accomplish just as much as many others do in a five-days work week. There are some pro’s and con’s of a four day work week, but it is worth considering.
2. Make time for others
Work when you can’t be with others. If others who are close to you work certain times, schedule your days in such a way that you can have free time together when you both are not working. My wife is a hair stylist and works on Saturdays. Before we had our daughter, I used to get as much work done as I could then so that we could spend other time together when we were both free.
3. Only work in your office
It’s too easy to pull out the laptop while sitting and watching TV in the living room to get a few things done. This can turn the entire house into your office and can easily lead to the feeling of “well maybe I should be working now”. Instead, remember that it’s a rule not to work anywhere but the office.
4. Turn off the phone
If you are having dinner with your spouse, spending time with your kids or with friends, turn off the phone and give the people that are most important in your life the time and focus they deserve.
5. Have fun hobbies
I recently purchased a small, older sailboat to learn sailing with my dad and brother. It’s been a great excuse to get out of work mode and spend time with family. Now we have an excuse to get together on a regular basis. Nothing is more refreshing then getting fresh air, relaxing, and spending time with family.
6. Don’t feel guilty
It’s OK to not work. Not working is actually beneficial. It gives you the ability to recharge and clear your mind. When you start to feel that guilt, immediately remind yourself that you need to separate from work and recharge so that you’re ready to go when you get back to work the next day. By taking time away from work, you are actually being productive.
7. Make time to accomplish non-work related goals
This does not happen by accident. It takes planning and commitment to fulfill your goals in life. If you don’t have goals outside of work, now is a great time to think of a few. Start with one or two things that you can accomplish in a reasonable time frame and start planning your next step for that goal. These goals could include health goals, family goals, or maybe something related to your community.
8. Don’t think about work when you are not working
Just because you are not typing at your computer or on your phone with a client, doesn’t mean that you are not working. Be in the present. Keep your mind on what you are currently doing. If you are driving your family somewhere, playing a round of golf with friends, or at dinner with family, stay focused on that. Worry about work when at work.
9. Do something for others
- Help out with a charity event
- Contribute to your community
- Help out a friend or neighbor when they ask.
- Find a way to use your skill set to help those in need.
10. Start now
When the clock strikes 5:00 pm today, stop working! Spend the entire evening not thinking about work, checking the phone for emails, or brainstorming for your next project. Leave that for tomorrow. You will do a better job of it in the morning.
It’s scary to think that we could let weeks, months, or years slip by and look back to only see work accomplishments. Work is important. It pays the bills and can help provide us the ability to accomplish our goals in life. However, it becomes dangerous when work consumes our lives.
Enjoy your life and keep focus on what matters most. Hint. . . It’s usually not work.
How do you achieve a good worklife balance in your life? We’d love to hear your tips.
Photo by lululemon athletica.
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