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Here’s what it actually takes to have work-life balance

Do ever find yourself in the office till 1am? Skipping family meals to focus on work? Checking company emails on weekends? If so, then chances are you could be feeling stressed, burnt out and even ill in the very near future. Finding the perfect work-life balance is all about giving the right amount of focus to your job, while taking time for yourself and your loved ones, too. Here’s how to start:

1 Set boundaries

Not for your colleagues – for yourself. Give yourself certain hours to check emails, make calls and focus on work, then close up shop once you’re done for the day. If you continue to work long into the night or over the weekend, you could find yourself taken advantage of, or  stressed and anxious as a result. Be firm about what you’re willing to give your company and take plenty of rejuvenating me-time for yourself.

2 Disconnect

If you have trouble distancing yourself from your laptop, phone or tablet, switch them off or put them away once working hours are over. Being too available can leave you vulnerable to late night or weekend requests, and can cause headaches and anxiety in the process. Put your devices away, recharge your own batteries, and come back to work refreshed and ready to do your best.

3 Treat all appointments equally

That dinner with your bestie may not land a million-rand deal for your company, but it’s every bit as important to your emotional well-being. If you’ve made plans, make a point of keeping them, and having fun at the same time. You’ll strengthen your connections with your loved ones and give yourself some much-needed time away from your desk.

4 Work smarter

If you’re habitually in the office way past closing time, you could benefit from working smarter, rather than harder. Give yourself a certain amount of time to accomplish each task and avoid time-wasting activities like unnecessary meetings or email interruptions. Block out dedicated time to focus on each task, check your emails in five to 10 minute blocks throughout the day, and when you’re done, go home! Being rested, refreshed and happy won’t just make you a better employee, it’ll make you a better you as well.

Is it maybe time for a complete change, and if so, how would you go about it? We’ll show you how to makeover your career(and your life).

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