The age old saying ‘work hard, play hard’ is one that we all know but many of us rarely put it into practise and end up feeling frustrated and wondering how to achieve the right work-life balance. It may seem like an impossible feat but by following our top tips you’ll be feeling brilliantly balanced in no time!
Yes man to no man
While it’s great to show your boss that you’re willing to put extra effort in and go above and beyond sometimes to get the job done, doing this constantly will exhaust and overwhelm you in time. No one wants to say no to the person in charge but chances are they won’t yell at you for doing so (and if they do you definitely need a new job.) If you don’t have the confidence to immediately say no, you can say you’ll get back to them about it, this will get you into a better routine than leaping to say yes. You also don’t have to scrabble to find a reason or excuse, you’re allowed to say no in a polite manner.
Let the past be the past
Sometimes the end of the day can roll around when we’re hit with the sense that we made a mistake earlier or didn’t do something quite as perfectly as we usually would, but you can’t beat yourself up about it. We’re not saying you should consistently do poor work and make excuses for that, but if you’re heading home for the weekend and suddenly think ‘should I just make those changes’ learn to take a breath and know that it can probably wait. No one has perfect workdays every single day so don’t punish yourself if you achieved fine rather than fantastic.
Holiday means stay away
Holiday days are often limited in jobs so you need to make use of them and enjoy them to the full. This means that when you book time off your boss and colleagues should know that you won’t be answering emails, taking calls or dealing with problems at the office and this is one of the best ways to achieve the right work-life balance. Set your out-of-office so that anyone who contacts you knows you won’t be responding and if a colleague still messages you asking for help with something don’t feel guilty about reminding them that you’re on holiday. There will almost always be someone else in the office who can help them immediately or if it can wait it will do until you’re back.
If you know someone who says they thrive off last-minute pressure and the burst of adrenaline to get issues solved, or if this is you, you should take a look at your work-life balance. Surviving mainly off of big rushes isn’t a healthy way to maintain your career or life outside of work if you’re rushing to find your next fix and chances are you’ll slump if you don’t get it which can create a difficult environment for colleagues, friends or family, especially if this slump makes you irritable. Yes the everyday slog can get boring, but if you can learn to find enjoyment in simple tasks instead of leaping from one big thing to another you’ll feel much more balanced.
What works for one won’t work for another
Finally, one of the most important ways to achieve the right work-life balance is to remember that everyone’s perceptions of ‘right’ is unique. You will inevitably meet people throughout your career that think you should get up at 5am and work until the sun goes down and others that believe you should only work three days a week but you have to learn what works for you.
Maybe it’s setting a personal rule that you won’t scroll aimlessly through work emails in an evening when you could be relaxing, maybe it’s making the most of work from home opportunities to maximise your work load without office distractions or maybe it’s standing your ground when you tell a colleague you won’t be able to help them out when you’re not working. Whatever you do to find your own work-life balance try to remember that sometimes you need to work to live instead of live to work.
If your job makes it difficult to find the right balance or makes you too stressed to enjoy your valuable time off then come and speak to us, we can help you find the balance that’s right for you!