Five Ways to Achieve a Better Work-Life Balance


Many of us are torn by the modern dilemma: Do we live to work or work to live?

The truth is, it’s all about finding the balance between job commitments and personal time. But it can be hard to achieve in today’s always connected, highly competitive workplace. Stats show people are laboring longer (65-hour workweeks aren’t unusual!) with far less me-time.

So take a deep breath and read these five ways you can get a better work-life balance.

  1. Just Say No

We all want to be team players, to go the extra mile when it’s required. But there are lots of bosses out there who have no life and no qualms about contacting you 24/7 about work. Time to make boundaries. Outside real emergencies, your time is your time. Make it clear you are unavailable after hours, always-on technology notwithstanding.

  1. Turn Devices Off

In fact, the always-on technology shouldn’t be. Don’t be afraid to turn off smartphones and to leave emails unchecked. The world will get on without you. In fact, more and more companies are putting limitations on the kinds of communications allowed after hours, realizing that they get better work from better balanced staff.

  1. Stop Multitasking

It becomes a kind of terrible badge of pride for people, talking about how many things they have to do at once on the job. The mad juggling of multitasking can give you an adrenaline rush and a pronounced sense of self-importance. But it can also load you with unbearable pressure and mar the quality of your work.

Rather than doing many things at once, concentrate on one task at a time, doing the most important ones first. Not only will you do better work, you might also find yourself accomplishing more than if you’re running around like a chicken with its head cut off.

  1. Set Aside Time for Family, Friends and Interests

On your deathbed, you aren’t going to sigh nostalgically for all the midnight oil you burned at the office. You will be filled with regret, however, if you didn’t spend enough time with the people you love and doing the things that matter to you. So find time now. Don’t live for a mythical future when you think you’ll have the leisure.

  1. Exercise Your Body. Calm Your Mind

Exercise pumps you with feel-good endorphins and gives you the kind of healthy glow that doesn’t come from running to the office printer. And some kind of mindfulness training – such as meditation or yoga – can help you live fully in the here and now.

With a sense of physical and mental wellbeing, you are a more rounded person and a happier, more productive worker. It’s win-win.