Achieving Work-Life Balance

January 14, 2019

As a coach, I get to hear a lot about work-life balance. People often feel guilty for putting more effort at work that they enjoy; they are apologetic for enjoying something and be called as workaholic or career-oriented with a negative connotation. 

 

To some, work is life and they enjoy every bit of it. The reality I believe is only you can decide what is work and life for you. And balance is having to do all the things you have personally wanted to.

 

To me balance is to manage my time. To be able to accommodate several things into the time available to me and be contented with what I’ve done for the day

 

So if I’m passionate about reading books, I should be able to find time from my schedule to read a book yet do justice to my work as well as not eat into my family time.

 

Here are my 10 game-changing tips that you can use to create that sense of balance in your life. 

 

1. Creating routines

 

Routines can create consistency in our schedules. They help us manage our time build healthy habits. However to keep with the routine, you need to be  intentional or purposeful.

 

Routines I have created in my life has given me stability.  It helped me to become productive, take better care of myself, and be consistent in doing so. 

 

When routines become habit you will see how easily you’ll be able to manage your time.

 

An effective way to create routines is when you calendar block your time.

 

2. Calendar blocking

 

Lot of productivity experts recommend this. It’s a simple technique where you 

block out chunks of your time for your routines, work, social events, family time and your domestic chores

 

I’ve shared this previously as well check here. It’s easy for you to calendar block your time if you’re planning in advance

 

3. Plan your week /month

 

If you don’t plan your week somebody else will plan for you. And believe me, scrambling around to get things done is not a great way to spend a week.

 

There are always many things for us to do .. to accomplish but we can only do 1-3 meaningful tasks in a day. When you plan in advance you can space your week to ensure you accommodate your priority tasks

 

You’ll be able to see which tasks need your 100% attention and which ones are okay to overlap.

 

4. Overlap unimportant tasks

 

I do recommend being mindful in every area of your life however there are few tasks that can be done on auto-pilot. Say you’ve scheduled to do laundry which probably doesn’t need that much focus, you can listen to say audio books or podcasts during this time. 

 

I don’t like household chores.. laundry , cooking… but when you have to do them why not make it enjoyable. I am always by either listening to podcasts or my fav music playlist that instantly peps up my mood

 

5. Wake early

 

Waking early will give you an extra time to focus on doing things that you love to do but are not able to find time doing it. The mornings are quiet, the air is fresh and after a good nights sleep you’re refreshed as well. This is the perfect time to meditate, to reflect, to plan your day and even to catch up on your reading.

 

The best method for changing the time you wake up is to do it gradually — 10-15 minutes earlier for this week, until you feel used to it, and then you extend another 10-15 min the next week.  So if you’re used to getting up at 7 a.m. normally, don’t suddenly change it to 6 a.m. Try 6:45 a.m. first.

 

Waking up early can be managed easily if you get your rest.

 

6. Get your rest

 

A good nights rest is very important for your body to function at its best. Believe me, if you’re cheating on your sleep, you body will eventually. Everybody needs to unwind and rest. So don’t go by few influencers telling you how much sleep you need. 

 

You need to know how much sleep you need and have to factor in that aspect in your life. Personally I know I need 6-7 hours otherwise I’m not a nice person.  

So a good nights rest is as important as self care

 

7.  Self care

 

How do you feel after a good massage? Does that usually put you in a good mood?

 

Self care is not a luxury as it is often perceived. It is crucial to our well-being. When you’re charged physically and emotionally you will be your productive best, isn’t it?

 

Also remember when you take care of yourself you’re not just impacting your own health but also those around you

 

And for creating self care in your life.. you must detach from your work. Which means you need to have a 

 

8. Cut off work time

 

There is a ton of research on internet that shows why you need to have cut off time from your work.

 

In order to be productive we need 8 of work 8 hours of recreation and 8 hours of rest.

 

When these overlap, they create physical and mental exhaustion. What is the use of the work you’re doing then? Think about it

 

9. Create Time outs

 

Time outs whether with or without your family is another important area to consider for balance. Taking chunks of time out for a meditation retreat or taking a vacation.. These are the times when you end up reflecting on your choices. 

 

I have mandatory vacations with my family every year for the past 11 years and every time I’m back I’m super charged with so many ideas that always help me.  

 

10. Meditate

 

Everyone knows it's benefits but not many can spare time for it, Meditation is a powerful tool that trains you to be aware, to be mindful of each and every moment. The idea is not to turn off the thoughts but to observe what each thought is.

 

Personally everytime I am seeking something, those silent moments were where I found my solution. Often these moments help me connect to my inner self, to my objectives in life and provide me direction to surge ahead.

 

I conclude with this beautiful quote by Lori Deschene - 

 

Life is all about balance. You don't always need to be getting stuff done. Sometimes it's perfectly okay and absolutely necessary to do nothing. 

 

I urge you to take sometime out of your busy schedule and recognise what activities in your life can give you that sense of balance you are seeking. It pays to think, plan and act. Good luck :)) 

 

You can watch the video version of this article by clicking here 

 

 

 

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  • Aparna RK
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