While work is important, you should not let it encroach on personal time.
All work and no play never made a bright professional! This may be a slightly different take on a popular saying, but holds very true in the life of most professionals today. Never-ending work hours, ever-increasing work-load, being on-call 24×7, the smartphone syndrome, lack of exercise, little or no existence of a social life are the most common reasons for working professionals burning out at a very early stage in their career.
As long as you’re working, juggling the demands of your career and personal life will probably be an ongoing challenge. Consider these ideas to find the work-life balance that’s best for you.
Maintain a to-do-list: If you start your day at work by listing down the tasks on your plate, it will help you prioritize and get time-consuming tasks out of the way. Taking a small break before moving on to the next big thing on your to-do-list works wonders and increases efficiency. Remember, late hours in office, don’t always reflect as hard-work and may be an indication of low efficiency.
Strike a balance: To be successful and happy at the same time, it is important to maintain equilibrium in all aspects of life – time for work, family, friends and most importantly, yourself. It’s all about prioritization. While work is important, you should not let it encroach on personal time. After exiting office try not to check your email every few minutes. Make a conscious decision to separate work time from personal time. Show the same amount of dedication towards quality time with family and friends as you would do at work. This gives your mind a much needed break and is sure to leave you relaxed and refreshed for the next day.
Find your calling: Work might be your first love, but what about that one hobby or interest that you always wanted to chase in your school/college days? Whether it’s pottery, gardening or a new dance form, identify and develop that interest and pursue it over weekends. By doing this you can avoid undue stress, unwind yourself and more importantly have something to look forward to over weekends.
As you move up your career ladder, always stay connected to the real world. One way of doing this is by attaching yourself to a social cause that is close to your heart. Make your weekends productive and meaningful by dedicating time to volunteering for a specific cause. Leverage your association with a social cause by displaying it on your resume. According to a survey conducted by LinkedIn, one out of five hiring managers in India agree they have hired a candidate because of their volunteer work experience.
It’s OK to say no: When you are already loaded with work and struggling to finish everything on time, it is perfectly OK to re-assess your current tasks before accepting a new one. If the new task is of a higher priority see what you can put on the back-burner and inform your team about it. Agreeing to take up additional workload out of guilt or a false sense of obligation will leave you with little time for self-nourishment and may affect the quality of your work.
Time away from work: Nothing rejuvenates the heart, body and soul like a little time off from work and getting away from the hustle –bustle of city life. While long vacations are mostly annual affairs, plan weekend getaways more often with family and friends. During this time away, switch-off from work completely.
It is encouraging to know that according to LinkedIn’s What Women Want @ Work survey, 93% Indian women believe that they can have it all in terms of career and family life. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance requires continuous effort as your personal and professional interests change. Periodically exam your priorities — and make changes, if necessary — to make sure you are in total control.
Courtesy: © idiva.com