If you came to this post, you did one of two things: You follow me and saw there was a new post (thank you!) or you Googled something along the lines of 'better work/life balance'. Either way, whether we are searching for answers or not, we could all use a reminder of the importance of work/life balance.
Work vs. Life
Work and life are commonly perceived as two different areas. 'Work' touches on all of the things we do for our jobs and 'life' focuses on the relationships with ourselves, family, and friends. But, when we spend 40+ hours a week deep in our work, can we really separate work from life?
I thought about this when I was leaving a restaurant with my friends, and saw the sign "I left my heart in Hawaii" (yes, we were at a Hawaiian restaurant). While this sign probably had no intention of providing a deeper meaning, it made me think of how it's easy to remove our passions and interests from our work. I caught myself thinking, "I never want to reach a point where I leave my heart out of my work". Commonly, we think, "Our job is a job. Simply put, we do what we are tasked to, and when that's complete, we go home for the day". But, work life doesn't need to be black-and-white. Work and life should be cohesive and vibrant.
Finding a Balance
So...How do we remove stress and boost happiness in our lives? Find a balance. This calls for some major changes.
Bring your creativity to the workplace. What are you passionate about? Think about how you can include passions in your everyday tasks. Are there committees or groups at your company that you can get involved with? What are you doing to drive your career in your current role? A lot of this resonates with one of my favorite career quotes, "You should make your dreams part of your daily pursuits. Take them seriously. Work on them." Think about this in how you can bring more of yourself to your role.
Connect with those around you. Truth is, you're spending over 40 hours a week with the people who sit in the cubicle next to you (this includes your boss!). Be social! Get to know your co-workers by grabbing lunch, taking a coffee break, or going to the office happy hour. These connections will ease stress and create a healthy work environment. Plus, being open with the people around you
At Home / On Vacation
Set some rules at home or on vacation. It's very tempting to check our emails at the dinner table or even bring our laptops on vacation. Resist the temptation and truly take time to relax. Setting rules is a great way to keep yourself mentally healthy and it will boost productivity. Teaching yourself to focus on one thing at a time will help you in the long run. There is a time for work and a time for play: learn the difference.
Schedule time with people you care about. It sounds simple, but it goes a long way. More often than not, we get busy with work and forget to carve out time for the ones we love. Scheduling time in advance gives you something to look forward to and reminds you of what is most important. When you're home, this can include a double date night, a Saturday BBQ or even a family brunch. When you have the urge to travel, this can include a family vacation, a weekend with your parents, or, better yet, a full on family reunion.
What do you do to create a better work/life balance? Share in the comments below!
Stamped on 8/30/2017 by The Letter Bea