Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of
balance, order, rhythm and harmony.
How do they do it? You know those people who work full time and seem to manage to have things rocking along well at home too. They have a secret. That secret is that they work to maintain a good work-life balance. You have, of course, heard the expression “all work and no play makes Jack a very dull boy?” Well the same goes for all play and no work. Focusing too much of any one area of your life, and neglecting the rest, is a sure way to make yourself and the people you care about crazy.
The good news is that you can have better in both worlds. You can work hard and still find time to enjoy your family and friends, and your life. You must take the initiative and decide that you need to create a better balance for yourself.
You will need to adopt a few essential strategies. And, no, it is not always simple, especially in the beginning. Work-life balance is about finding new ways to balance the demands of your work with the demands of your personal life. You actually can be successful and happy doing both; or at least happier.
Establish A Flexible Schedule
The more rigid you are, the less likely it is that you will be able to develop a work-life balance that is actually successful for you. You have to understand that there will be times when work requires more attention and other times when your personal life requires more attention. It is certainly much easier to balance the two when you allow a little flexibility in your schedule. Always leave a little bit of room for the unexpected. That way you are never taken completely by surprise.
Balance Your Workload
As much as you can control this situation, you will need to be sure that you take on enough work to keep you busy, but not so much work that you constantly feel like you are a heartbeat away from overwhelm, and that can’t create some better balance in your life. Take on additional tasks at work only when you feel up to it, and you know your family time won’t be impacted by you coming home late a couple of nights in a particular given week. Likewise, don’t overbook yourself with family and friend events unless you can balance your personal obligations with your work ones successfully.
Prioritize Your Activities
There are going to be times when you just cannot get everything done. Amazing, I know. Don’t panic! As long as you have prioritized your activities you will be able to ensure that you are able to take care of the most important things ones first, and you can always catch up on less important activities at a later time.
This is extremely hard for most people. But, any seriously successful work-life balancer knows that you simply cannot succeed unless you know how to delegate. Know who you can turn to in a time of need and who has a skill-set that is compatible with your actual needs, so that when the occasion arises you can dish out some of the items on your plate to others. Notice that the sentence doesn’t read if, but when.
Delegation isn’t just for official ‘work’ tasks. You can also delegate personal tasks including the laundry and other chores. Work-life balance is easier to create when you schedule enough time for your personal interests and work tasks. You can do this by organizing your schedule and taking great care not to overburden your plate at any particular time.
Also remember that to achieve a successful work life balance you must put your personal life at or near the top of your priority list.
If work is your only priority, then you cannot succeed at both. Finding meaningful and challenging work is an important aspect of any quest for work-life balance. The good news is you don’t have to give up one or the other. You can manage to work and still raise your family and do the things you love, and be successful!