As you grow older, it gets harder and harder to juggle the demands of your job among the rest of your daily responsibilities. In today’s work environment, companies are cutting back employment and raising work hours to compensate for the unstable economy. Technology’s ability to connect us to the world 24/7 also makes it increasingly easy to be available for work when you are not physically there.
This “always-on” culture can be overwhelming, especially if your social and personal life is constantly interrupted by those pesky work emails and emergencies. Here are some things that can help you regain that all too elusive work-life balance.
- Go screen-free. With easy access to co-workers and emails, it can be hard to actually “end” work for the day even after you leave. Gradually wean yourself off of responding to every nonemergency message by going “unplugged” for an hour a day. It’s important to devote time to your personal life in order to unwind and recharge.
- Hit the gym. Although the additional task of going to the gym early in the morning or after a hectic day may seem like a burden, exercise in any form can relieve stress. An active lifestyle can increase feel-good endorphins and distract you from daily worries at work.
- Schedule down time. Treat your relaxation just as seriously as a big client meeting and schedule leisure time into your calendar. This way, it’s an actual commitment with a designated time in your plans.
- Get your 8 hours. Sleep deprivation can hinder your focus and decrease productivity, which in turn will cause you to stay later at work to complete all your tasks. Make sure to get a good night’s rest every night so you can wake up more energized to fulfill your work obligations, and as a result, get to your personal life faster.
- Just say “no.” Determine your priorities outside of work and say no other obligations that take up too much time away from them. It may be hard at first, but its value will soon come to light as you realize you are spending your free time enjoying activities you actually like.