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Work-life balance hacks

Written by Russell Cragun on July 12, 2016 in Strategies & Tips
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For most people it can be challenging to balance your work-life and your personal life. It can be stressful trying to find that divide between the two, and yet still find time in the day for yourself.

There are many Google tips to help you keep your life organized, and there are plenty of books you can read that will help motivate you to get more done in your day to day. Nevertheless, the truth of it all is that there isn’t a cure all for everyone. I’m a lot different than you, and I have a different way of getting things done than others. The key to finding a healthy work-life balance is to find something that works for you, and more importantly, something that makes you feel good and productive.

We’ll cover some strategies on how to organize your life and ways to unwind personally. Like I mentioned earlier, some of these suggestions may not work for you, and that’s okay, but  hopefully this list will give you some ideas as to what will help you to be more organized.


Plan your month, weeks, and daily schedule 

Monthly

At the end and beginning of each month sit down with a calendar and plan out your events. What big events do you have that you can not miss? Do you have anything planned like a vacation, concerts, sporting events, or maybe a night out with friends. Make sure you mark these on your calendar so you don’t forget about them, and you don’t accidentally schedule over something.

Weekly

The same can be applied to a weekly schedule. Every Sunday night, or Monday morning it’s important to write down all the things you want to get done for the week. What goals do you have? Do you want to get a big project done, or maybe start working out? Write down what specific things you want to get done. Once you compiled a list of everything you want to accomplish it’s time to move on to daily planning.

Daily

This can be at the same time of your weekly planning, but it’s something that you should still review everyday. Here you can make a more detailed layout of your day, and exactly what time you can get things done. This allows you to account for your daily commute, work schedule, workouts, and everything else. By doing this it will allow you to prioritize your weekly and monthly goals more accurately. You might not get all your weekly goals done like you wanted, and that’s totally normal and acceptable. By scheduling your days out you’ll be able to better gauge when you’ll be able to get certain task done.

By planning your months, weeks, and days out you’ll have a better opportunity to get the things done that you want and need to, and plan in critical family and personal time. It might take some commitment, but it will help reduce your stress and make you feel more productive.

Plan something to look forward to

This might be one of the harder things to do depending on your financial or life situation, but I can not emphasis the importance of this enough. If you don’t give yourself something to look forward to then it can be easy to feel unhappy, monotonous, or even depressed. Choose something that you love to do and make that activity unskippable on your calendar. It can make you work harder towards your day to day goals, and can give you something to look forward to on those especially rough days.

Start a new diet or exercise program

It’s generally thought that working out or dieting can often increase the quality of our lives. So why don’t more people do it? Well, it’s hard to be consistent. Excuses and life always seem to get in the way: there’s never enough time in the day to work out, you have to drive to gym, etc. Trust me, the list goes on and on.

If you plan on going for a short run in the morning, or at night before bed, you’ll get so much more energy and feel so much better. Not all workout need to be intense and tiring like P90X, just something simple for 10-15 minutes can make all the difference in the world. Headaches will go away, metabolism will speed up, etc. Exercise and healthy eating will help you gain the confidence and motivation to accomplish more in the day. You’ll then catch yourself skipping the elevator and walking the four flights of stairs to your desk.

If working out isn’t your thing, or you’re physically unable to do so, then I would still recommend starting a good diet. Try cutting out processed sugar for a week and see how you feel. Maybe cut back on some late night snacking or eating too many carbs. By doing some of the small things you’ll start noticing a slight difference in the quality of your life, and those can become major changes. 

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Start a journal

Another great way to get a good work-life balance is cherishing the moments you already have. So many people are focused on obtaining a life that isn’t realistic or years away. Take some time today and look at your life. It might be better than you initially thought. Take time every day to write the good things that you experience. Maybe your kid did something cute, or you saw a funny dog. There are plenty of apps and programs now that make it easy to update your journal daily.

Put the phone down and walk away

I can’t even tell you how many nights I have wasted because I was too preoccupied with my phone. Honestly, if my phone wasn’t important for my day job I’d probably chuck it into a ravine somewhere. If you have a lot to do after work, or just want to enjoy your time at home better. Put your phone somewhere you’re not going to check it every minute. That might be a little bit harder now with PokemonGo on the rage. The average American looks at their phone 74 times a day. If you break it down into about a minute a check, that’s over an hour a day just checking your phone and notifications. That’s 7 hours a week, 30+ hours a month, and over 6 days a year by just seeing who posted on your wall. Put. It. Down.

Enjoy the little things

While finding a good work-life balance may be hard, it’s important to enjoy the little things in life. As mentioned earlier with the journal entries, you need to take time to just be happy, and work on yourself. If the highlight of your day is looking at this cute puppy, or maybe watching this chipmunk getting thrown off a bird feeder. Then just enjoy it, and let it make your day better. The work-life balance is up to you, and how you handle it. You can make the best of things or the worst of things. So go make it happen, and enjoy the little things.

 

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