The Importance of Work/Life Balance
Creating harmony between work and personal life can determine success
Whether you are a CEO, college-student or stay at home parent, creating a harmonious work-life relationship is crucial to leading a fulfilling life. According to study by CNN in 2015, Americans working full-time are averaging around 47 hours a week with about 30% of the work force working on Saturday and/or Sunday.
So, what’s the importance of creating a stabilized life for yourself? First, you are less likely to become burnt-out which can have negative effects on both your personal and professional life. Second, you train your mind to focus on the present and give your full attention. Third, you will experience fewer health problems since stress and exhaustion attack the immune system. Need some help achieving harmony? Try these tips!
Balance doesn’t always mean equal.
Understanding that you need to be flexible with your personal and professional life. If you’ve got an important deadline coming up, then spend more time at work making sure that it’s completed. On the flip side, use a vacation day as a “mental health” day to decompress. Understanding that sometimes either work or personal will need to take more precedence and that’s okay. If you need to take care of personal matters, take the time to get it settled. Bringing those problems to work will only distract you further.
Throughout the day, you are going to be spending time with many different people. Whether it’s your family at home, your employees at work, or with other professionals at meetings, being present during all these situations is so important. Valuable time spent can be the difference between feeling well-balanced and, well, not. If you are at work, focus on the task at hand and use the time you must be as productive as possible. While spending time with loved ones, do them the same courtesy. Focus on them and their needs, spending valuable time can recharge you for the next day.
I am a firm believer that lack of communication is the root of most problems, and that, alternatively, open communication can solve most problems. How can you use this theory to maintain work-life balance? Simple. All it takes is telling those directly affecting by your work (i.e. boss, co-workers, managers) and those affected at home (family, friends, etc.) what is going on in your life. Now, I’m not saying you need to go through the company shouting that any issues at home, but if you need to focus on a personal situation, talk to your boss or superior. Most all human-beings are willing to work with you. Vice versa, tell your family if you’re needing to focus more at work.
Stress isn’t only bad for your mental health, it can have a severe impact on your physical health. Stress is directly linked to heart disease, high blood pressure and cancers. Particularly in women, stress over long periods of time can alter their hormone levels and cause a high release of cortisol. Immune systems also break down under sustained stress, causing a person to be more susceptible to illness. Stress and anxiety are not menial problems and living in a consistent state of stress has serious affects on your health. Know when it’s time to say enough is enough. Your physical health is more important than meeting a deadline.
If you have a high-stress job, make sure that you’re seeing a doctor frequently enough to stay in tune with your body and its needs. Find that stress is becoming too much to handle? Take a vacation or adjust your habits so that your work stays at work. Living in a constant state of stress and anxiety is not sustainable.