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Monday, May 25, 2020

The Delicate Art Of The Work - Life Balance

Photo by Taryn Elliott from Pexels

Whether you work for yourself or you are an employee, the pressure that our careers put on our home life is immense, especially during a time of global crisis. Financial pressures, a need to deliver on client briefs and adapting to the world-changing around us all mean more time behind the desk and less time with the family.

Balancing your work and life is incredibly difficult. Even if we aren’t working on something physically, we can often be thinking about a problem we have or a campaign we need to create, and this takes our mind off our children or our partner. This can make your family feel you aren’t mentally or emotionally available, which can lead to issues in our meaningful relationships.

There are some steps we can take to restore the balance and ensure we give enough time to work, our families and ourselves.

If you work from home, it may be time to consider sourcing an office space away from the house. See if there are flexible workplaces near you, which you could use for a day or two in the week or even rent for a few months. This will help you define your working hours from your home hours.

You should set boundaries both within the office and with your family. Work needs to understand that from a specific time in the day, and at weekends, you will be with your family and won’t respond to emails. Your family should also respect that you should only be contacted if there is an emergency at home. Having two phones can help this situation, a personal phone which is switched off at work, and a work phone which you turn off at home.

Using a method like time blocking will also help you to achieve a more productive working day and highlight the hours you are free to dedicate to the family. A time block is a list of jobs you need to get done with an allocated time set to do them. You should prioritise your most important assignments to the hours you know you are more productive. Then fit everything else around that. Stick to the times you have given yourself and don’t be tempted to slot things in when you should be reading a bedtime story to your son.

Once you have found time to fit your family and work into your day, you need to take some time for yourself. This could be an hour with your friends at a bar or taking time out in the gym or even just to read a book. You shouldn’t just dedicate every working hour to other people, you will burn out, and this will cause you to be less productive and potentially grow resentful of those that want some of your time.

Making sure you find ways to balance all parts of your life will ensure you have a more rounded lifestyle which will make everything more successful.
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