If you're feeling overworked and finding it more challenging than ever to juggle the demands of your job and the rest of your life, you're not alone. Many people, in all walks of life, are presently having a more difficult time finding balance in their lives. One main reason is because there have been numerous cutbacks or layoffs where they work and thus afraid it may happen to them, so they are putting in even more hours than what they should so as to confirm their commitment to the company; great for the company, but not so great for the individuals health and well-being. So what's the balance ? What can someone do to try and obtain that work-life balance ?
1. Build downtime into your schedule. When you plan your week, make it a point to schedule time with your family and friends and activities that help you recharge.
2. Drop activities that sap your time or energy. "Many people waste their time on activities or people that add no value -- for example, spending too much time at work with a colleague who is constantly venting and gossiping," says Marilyn Puder-York, PhD, a psychologist and executive coach in New York and Connecticut. She recommends taking stock of activities that aren't really enhancing your career or personal life and minimizing the time you spend on them. Leave work earlier if you make a conscious effort to limit the time you spend on the web and social media sites, making personal calls, or checking your bank balance.
3. Rethink your errands. Do I have to go to the store now ? When can I go get groceries ? Do I have to go on Facebook now ? Is it important that I venture to the clothing store now or can I go another time ? Do I really ned this ? The core of an effective work-life balance definition are two key everyday concepts that are relevant to each of us. They are daily Achievement and Enjoyment, ideas almost deceptive in their simplicity but extremely relevant for day-to-day living.
4. Get moving. It's hard to make time for exercise when you have a jam-packed schedule, but experts say that it may ultimately help you get more done by boosting your energy level and ability to concentrate. Research shows exercise can help you to be more alert and I have personally noticed that when I don't exercise, because I'm trying to squeeze in another half hour of writing or working, I don't feel as alert. Better to do 30 minutes of speed-walking than to be rigidly working sitting in a chair.
5. Remember that a little relaxation goes a long way. Don't get overwhelmed by assuming that you need to make big changes to bring more balance to your life. Recommend instead to setting realistic goals, like trying to leave the office earlier at least one night per week.