Today, quality of work-life balance is one of the most important criteria for choosing a job. This generation wants to do it all - work hard, travel, stay fit, eat healthy food, spend time with loved ones, and check things off from bucket lists.
However, how many working professionals can claim to have a prospering career, healthy mind and body, and perfect relationships at the same time?
If you are a working professional, chances are you spend most of your time chasing deadlines while managing your personal life. The struggle is real! And so, we have some practical tips on maintaining a work-life balance for you. Check them out below!
1. 'Me' time
This is the most important of all the tips out there. Nothing can beat 'Me' time. Having even an hour to yourself during the day can help you unwind and feel energized. It will recharge you to go out in the world and get stuff done like a boss.
In your 'Me' time, stick to doing what makes you the happiest - be it hitting the gym, taking a walk in the park, dancing like no one is watching, playing with a pet, or simply lying in the bed while staring at the roof.
2. Get social
There are no two ways about it that man is a social being. We all need friends and family. So, make time for family and friends just as you would do for work. Maintaining a balance between personal and professional life is the key!
Do things with family that brings you closer to each other, have meaningful conversations, and lots of fun. It could be something as simple as cooking dinner together or going out for a walk with each other.
3. Learn to prioritize
When it comes to work-life balance, there is no standard template. The idea is to set your priorities right as per your needs and situation and allocate sufficient time to each of the important activities. However, accept that there is no perfect equilibrium.
Having your priorities right will keep you away from unnecessary and unimportant tasks. You will be able to better utilize your day and energy.
4. Talk to your boss
If you feel that you are overloaded with work or if you are on the verge of burnout, talk to your boss about how you feel. There is no harm in seeking help. You can ask for more time on a particular project or work from home option for a few days. Chances are that he/she will happily help you. With increasing awareness about mental health, employers and organizations are growing considerate about the mental health of employees.
5. Stay organized
Stay organized when it comes to the daily routine activities. For instance, before going to bed, make sure to have your office bag ready for the next day. If you take too much time getting ready in the morning, get your outfit sorted a night before. This will save you time in the morning and you will feel more relaxed before leaving for work.
6. Healthy eating habits
Our eating habits suffer the most when we have a hectic schedule. It is very important to eat healthy food. Healthy eating habits can make you feel more energized throughout the day and strengthen your immune system.
Drink at least 3-4 liters of water every day. You can download apps like Aqualert or Daily Water that remind you to drink water throughout the day. Or simply set an alarm for your meals and stick to the same schedule every day.
Limit your intake of tea and coffee. Choose fruit and vegetable juices instead. For evenings, keep a small pouch of dry fruits with you. This will help you avoid binging on samosas and chips when you feel hungry.
Most of us spend all day sitting and working on our machines. When you work 10 hours a day, working out may seem impossible. However, do not think of it as an hour-long gym training. On days when you do not have time, take small steps with mini-workout routine. It's quick, effective and extremely refreshing. You can use mobile apps for the same such as The Johnson & Johnson Official 7 Minute Workout, Seven - 7 Minute Workout, Map My Fitness, 7 Minute Workout, etc.
Ditch the elevators and take stairs instead. Take 5 minutes of stretching breaks in between work or take a little walk while talking on the phone.
8. Take vacations
Go ahead and take that holiday you have been planning for months. Travelling helps us disconnect from our daily routine for a while. Take at least one long holiday every year and explore a new place. Go with your loved ones or go solo – make sure you completely disconnect from your work when you are on a holiday. It will not only prevent burnouts but also make you more energized and creative.
9. Take small breaks
It may not be possible to take long vacations every time. However, try taking a staycation every once in a while. Just book a hotel in your city, relax, and pamper yourself. You can also make a visit to the spa, take a dip in the pool, or join a dance class.
The idea is to disconnect from work and other chores from time to time. Trust us, you will come back to work feeling much more relaxed and refreshed. Check out websites like Nearbuy and Mydala for tempting deals and offers.
10. Learn to say 'No'
Say 'No' to things that do not align with your personal goals. Often we spend too much engaging in activities or taking up tasks that do not contribute to our goals. It is okay to say no sometimes. And it certainly does not mean that you are lazy or running away from responsibilities. It simply means that your time is valuable and should not be spent on non-value adding activities.
11. Digital Detox
If you are addicted to your phone and easily get distracted by social media notifications, learn the art of managing your distractions.
Focus on the task at hand. For instance, if you are out for lunch with colleagues, enjoy the conversation with them and leave your phone aside.
Instead of going through the Facebook feed aimlessly, try spending that particular time on better things like taking a short walk or getting to know a colleague.
Switch off your gadgets every now and then. Not only will you find yourself spending quality time at work and home, you will also feel relaxed and rejuvenated.
12. Proper sleep
Time and again we hear that sleep is vital for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Make sure you get at least 7 hours of sleep each day. Getting adequate sleep will keep you active and alert throughout the day.
If you have trouble falling asleep at night, it could be due to stress. In such cases, get help from a professional therapist.
Mental health is a major concern around the world. Workplaces can be very competitive and cause stress to professionals. Pay attention to your mental health and do not hesitate in seeking professional help if needed.
Practice mindfulness and meditation. In the long run, meditation increases concentration, peace, and immunity. You can start with 5 minutes a day and increase gradually. Apps like Calm, Headspace, and Mindfulness are well-known apps to start practicing meditation. They come with free trials. Other apps such as Insight Timer and Simple Habit Meditation are free to use.
14. Do not compare
Often, we see others enjoying their lives and feel miserable about ourselves. We also try to copy their plans and fit them into our lives. However, remember that your situation is different and what works for others may not work for you.
Instead, focus on the positives in your life and indulge in activities that make you happy. For example, if you like painting, take time out from your schedule at least once a week and paint.
15. Find work that suits your needs
If you think that your current job does not let you balance work and life the way you would like, you may want to look for other options. There is no point staying in a job that does not make you happy.
So, find work that makes you happy and gives you the luxury to choose a lifestyle that you want. It might take some time to materialize but keep taking small steps to achieve what you wish for.
16. Set realistic expectations
There is no such thing as a perfect balance between career, relationships, and self. If you expect to live a life without any sacrifice or compromise, you will end up with nothing but disappointment. So make practical plans as per your situation and keep pushing forward every single day.
Quality of work-life balance is integral for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Always remember that work is an important part of your life but there are other aspects that need your time and attention. Make sure to balance things and you will find yourself thriving and not just surviving in life.
Check out which companies have great work-life balance ratings.