Stress has an enormous impact on our daily lives, our relationships, and our work performance. Employers and employees alike are learning that the importance of a good work-life balance is critical to their bottom line. But deciding to focus more on work-life balance and actually achieving a well-balanced life are two very different things. In today’s article, we at All-Star Personnel are happy to share some of our favorite tips and tricks that we find personally helpful in achieving a good work-life balance.
Identify and Communicate Your Boundaries
Today’s job market thrives on a brutal 24-hour availability cycle. More employees are expected to take their work home with them, continue work long after the normal nine-to-five shift might lead you to assume, even come in on weekends or at a moment’s notice. Employees, particularly salaried employees, are often considered to be always on duty, and that can be a serious drain on your health and happiness.
The key is to identify and communicate your boundaries. If you are unable to stay in the office past a certain time because you need to pick your child up from school or daycare, that’s a hard boundary. If the constant pressure of nonstop emails drives you crazy, consider limiting your availability to emergency phone calls. The point is to figure out what your hard lines are, then share those limits with your co-workers and supervisors or managers. Chances are, they will not only understand these limits but have similar boundaries they themselves need to support.
Manage Your Stress
Everyone has a different way to effectively handle stress. For many people, the most helpful methods include exercise, eating well, and getting enough sleep. If work stress is taking its toll, it might be a good time to reevaluate your daily habits to see if you can improve in any of those three key aspects. Yoga and meditation are also often found to be helpful to reducing stress and focusing the mind. Keeping lists and talking things out with a friend or co-worker can often help, as well.
Turn Off Your Tech
Constant emails and text messages can work to compound your stress while you are trying to unwind from a stressful day. The simplest way to avoid this is by turning your phone or computer off between certain hours, when you know you don’t want to be interrupted. There’s a false sense of urgency that is associated with these notifications, constantly pulling you away from your family or friends. If you want to avoid undue stress on those relationships, and on yourself as well, try taking a break from it all.
While it is important to set and pursue various goals to remain productive and inspired within your career, it’s also valuable to remember that you can’t do everything well if you try to do it all at once. The key is to pace yourself. Know your limits, and do your best to work within them to stay healthy and balanced for the long term.
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