If you’re anything like me, you have a hard time with work life balance. You spend too much time working and not enough with your family, pursuing hobbies, and otherwise enjoying life.
Sound familiar? Don’t worry. This is a very common problem and you’re not alone.
Put simply, the term work life balance refers to one’s ability to prioritize their work life and their personal life in equal measure. It’s a difficult task, but an essential one. Those who achieve balance generally have better mental health and find more success than those who don’t.
So, in this article, I’m going to teach you how to balance work and life, using a simple seven-step process. It’s not a foolproof plan. I still struggle to implement it from time to time. But it will keep you on track. That’s all you can really ask for, right? Let’s get started!
1. Define Work Life Balance
People bandy about the term “work life balance” on a regular basis. But, honestly, the term they should be using is “work life integration”. Why does this matter?
Because a perfect balance between one’s work life and home life isn’t a worthwhile goal.
Instead, we should each work to integrate our professional and personal lives in a way that makes sense to us personally, and allows us to live our definition of a fulfilling life.
With that in mind, take a moment to decide what work life balance means to you. Are you happy working 50 hours a week and spending less time with your family? Would you rather work just enough hours to pay the bills and spend the rest of your time with loved ones?
There’s no right or wrong answer. Just be honest with yourself and identify what you want.
2. Set Boundaries For Yourself
Now that you know what proper work life balance looks like to you, set boundaries.
Boundaries will help keep your professional life from overtaking your personal life. They’ll also ensure your working hours don’t lead to excess stress and burnout.
But here’s the thing about boundaries: you have to stick to them. Don’t “decide” to stop working at 7pm every evening, then work until 10pm instead. Don’t “decide” to log out of your work email on Friday afternoons, only to log right back in on Saturday mornings, either.
Note: Boundaries are especially hard for remote workers to commit to. After all, they work and live in the same location, which means the temptation to keep working is ever present.
If you and/or your employees work remotely, consider using an accountability system. Find someone to help you set and adhere to your boundaries. Then do the same for them.
3. Schedule Your Days Ahead of Time
One of the easiest ways to achieve a healthy work life balance is to schedule your days.
What will you do before, during, and after work? Now, add each of these things to your personal calendar. Doing so will help you limit your work hours and prioritize your personal life the way you should. It will also help you develop your time management skills.
Just don’t forget to schedule breaks! The occasional 15 minute break, in addition to your lunch break, will keep you feeling fresh and motivated throughout the day.
The more scheduled your day is, the more happy and productive you’re likely to be.
4. Take Advantage of Your Paid Time Off
At this point, you’ve decided what a good work life balance looks like to you.
You’ve also set boundaries for yourself to ensure your career doesn’t consume your entire life. And you’ve scheduled your days to help keep you on track and accountable. Now what?
Now I want you to take advantage of your paid time off (PTO.) According to Zippia, 55% of American workers don’t use all of their vacation time. This is a serious problem!
Time off leads to greater employee engagement, lower stress levels, and healthier personal relationships. Put simply, employees who take the occasional vacation are happier, more productive, and less likely to bail on the organizations they currently work for.
Proper work life balance isn’t just about working less. It’s about enjoying the work you do more. Trust me, your job will be more enjoyable when you get away from it from time to time.
5. Delegate as Many Tasks as You Can
Productivity is key to work life balance. The faster you get things done, the more time you can dedicate to reading, kayaking, or whatever else you like to do in your personal time.
One of the best ways to boost productivity is to delegate tasks to other capable individuals.
What if you hired a personal assistant to field calls and arrange your schedule? Or a marketing agency to plan and implement your company’s next lead generation campaign? Or an independent sales team to contact potential buyers and pitch your company’s products?
You’d have way less on your plate and wouldn’t have to work so many hours, right? Take a moment to list the activities you can delegate to others. Then do it.
Real Talk: I can’t help you find a top-level personal assistant or hire a quota-crushing sales team. But I can connect you to an experienced marketing agency. Scorpion has the experience your company needs to boost website traffic and engage target audiences.
Contact our team today to learn how we can help your business grow!
6. Don’t Forget About Your Physical Health
News alert: your physical health is important.
Unfortunately, poor work life balance often limits our ability to take care of our bodies. We get so wrapped up in our careers, we forget to exercise, eat vegetables, and get to bed on time.
When you’re able to pursue a healthy lifestyle, though, you’ll feel better. And when you feel better, you’ll perform better at work and be able to enjoy your personal time to the max.
So commit to your health. Then encourage your employees to do the same. It may be difficult at first, but the long-term benefits you experience will be more than worth it. Promise!
7. Evaluate Your Attempts to Achieve Work Life Balance
Lastly, take time to assess your efforts.
Do you feel more balanced? If not, think about ways that you can improve in this area. Maybe you need to ask your boss for a more flexible working arrangement. Or simply set stricter boundaries for yourself. Maybe you just need to prioritize your family life more.
If you do feel balanced, identify the things you’re doing right? What steps have you taken to ensure your work life doesn’t engulf your personal life? Keep doing these things!
I have a little career advice for you: don’t skip this final step. It may seem inconsequential, but it’s super important. If you don’t evaluate your efforts, you’ll never improve them.
Better Work Life Balance is Possible
If you implement the seven-step system above, you’ll achieve better work life balance. It’s not a foolproof plan, as mentioned earlier. But it’s a fantastic guide. I encourage you to use it.
And don’t forget, delegating tasks to other qualified individuals is one of the best ways to achieve balance in your life. Why? Because it will reduce your workload, which means you’ll have more time to spend with family, pursue hobbies, and enjoy your time on this earth.
When it comes to marketing, delegate tasks to Scorpion. Our team has decades of experience in the field and will help promote your brand and products to more people than ever before. Get in touch with us today to learn more about how we can help you.