10 Ways to Achieve Work-Life Balance

Posted in Health, Lifestyle
on August 1, 2016

BB72516_10WaystoAchieveWork-LifeBalance

It’s important to give 100 percent in your career, especially if you’re in love with your job. But, it can do you more harm than good if you’re constantly focused on work, and not giving yourself time to rest and rejuvenate once you leave the office. Here are 10 tips to help you achieve the proper work-life balance.

1| Create Your Perfect Morning Routine

Don’t give yourself 10 minutes to get ready and race out the door. Not only are you beginning the day off on a negative note, but yourself not giving yourself time to prepare for the work day ahead. Instead, set your alarm 15 minutes earlier than you normally would, and give yourself time to get ready without rushing. You’ll feel prepared to take on your day positively.

2| Make Your Work Day Productive

When you have a productive day at work, you feel better about giving yourself time to relax after work. So don’t procrastinate on any big projects, manage your time effectively, and get stuff done during your eight hours of work. When 5 p.m. rolls around, you’re going to feel good about shutting down your computer, and leaving work for the day without wondering if you did enough that day.

3| Take Small Breaks

If you’re feeling overwhelmed at work, take small, five-10 minute breaks a few times throughout the day to take your eyes off the computer and take a breather. Don’t feel guilty if you’re stressed out and need to take small breaks. Not taking breaks makes you less productive because the stress of work will make you not want to do anything for the rest of the day. If you struggle with taking breaks, schedule one like a meeting and set a timer on your phone for five minutes.

4| Make Your Lunch Break Worth It

I know many people who prefer to take “working lunches.” The problem with this is that you’re not really setting aside time for your mind to not think about work. If you struggle with this—physically leave your office for part of your lunch and take a walk outside for 10 minutes. That way, you won’t be tempted to answer emails, phone calls, etc. You’ll return from lunch ready to finish out the day.

5| No Emails After 5

This is so difficult to abide by especially when emails are at our fingertips. I desperately try to not look at emails or respond to emails once I leave the office. If there’s an emergency, someone will call or text you about it if it can’t wait until the next day. You need to enjoy the short time you have after work to unwind and do things you truly enjoy. Whatever email you receive can wait until tomorrow, I promise.

6| Say No

Is your workload too much? Have you been taking on too much at work recently? Speak up, be honest, and learn to say no in the future. I cannot stress the importance of this tip because if you’re always saying yes, you’re taking away from your free time and work more before or after work. Ask for help when necessary, and make sure to say no if you know it will be too much for you to handle alone.

7| Plan Time Off Accordingly

I learned that many people in marketing let their vacation days go to waste, which is not good at all for achieving work-life balance. You need to make sure you’re setting aside time for personal days, a long-weekend vacation, etc. If you don’t take time off to recharge, you’re going to burn yourself out and you’re going to decrease productivity in your life and in your career altogether. Schedule your time off and budget for some emergency days/sick day as well.

8| Put Mental/Physical/Emotional Health First

The most important tip on here is to make sure you put your physical/mental/emotional health before ANYTHING work related. If you’re overwhelmed or not feeling 100 percent, talk to someone, go for a run, eat healthy, and go to all doctor appointments. It’s so important to take care of yourself in all areas of your life. When you’re all-around healthy, you’re happier and go to work with your best foot forward.

9| Work On Your Social Life

There was a period of time where I felt like I had no social life whatsoever with graduate school, working, interning and blogging all at once. While it’s great to work/intern and accomplish all your #GirlBoss goals, it’s all important to make time for friends, family and alone time as well. Text your friend and get a drink after work. Make time for Sunday breakfast with your family. Time with your loved ones is so important.

10| Take Advantage of Weekends

Make a list of everything you want to do over the weekend. Yes, I’m asking you to make a to-do list for the weekend—even if it’s “read a book,” “go for a hike,” “do laundry,” etc. The goal is to make the most of your weekends and do everything you can’t do and treat yourself to during the week. Instead of spending an entire day binge-watching Netflix, you can do several things you love and also enjoy some Netflix as well!

How do you achieve work-life balance? What tips would you add to this list? Make sure to leave a comment below!

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  • Reinventing Julie

    Thank you for this post. I am trying to do this in pieces. When you are running a business (blog) you become a slave of social media so learning how to put things down and let them take care of themselves becomes important. I am getting there.

    • Yes! Just remember to take it day by day. If you check your email one night, take note of it and try better for the next day.

  • Jenine Isa

    YES! work life balance is so important to me. I especially agree with what you said about disconnecting in the evenings.

    • It can be difficult if your job is marketing/PR/Social Media because you’re constantly responding to comments, questions, emails, etc. But yes, I try to keep my phone and email far away at night.

  • It is so important, and so hard! I can’t have a schedule because I’m home with kids, but I do need to stop emails etc after a certain point, and really work less on weekends!

    • Working less on the weekends has become a bigger challenge for so many young professionals because we think that we need to respond/react ASAP! But, if it’s not an emergency, it can wait until Monday! Just remember that next time you’re tempted.

  • Lindsay Katherine

    This balance is hugely important! I especially like your tip about no emails after 5 – I think if I can get in the habit of not checking emails or social media after a designated time, that will maximize my time at home.

    • Exactly! If you feel like you HAVE to answer emails or be on social media for engagement–set aside 30 minutes to do it all so you can maximize your time afterwards.

  • Luna C. Lupus

    Great tips!!! “No emails after 5” is the best advice I’ve heard so far but I know it’ll be a challenge for me! Once again, amazing post! 🙂

    Luna || http://www.luna-lupus.com

    • Thank you very much for your sweet comment! And yes, email seems to be the one things everyone struggles with the most–but not looking and responding to emails after work IS possible!

  • Joules (Pocketful of Joules)

    In previous jobs it has been really hard for me to maintain a work/life balance, but now that I work in higher education it’s so much easier. Now people understand that life is just as important as the work part!

    • They definitely don’t understand that in the marketing world, haha! That’s why I always tell people you have to be persistent about making your work-life balance capable for you to achieve every single day!

  • Oh my goodness! I really needed to hear this. I’m a teacher and going back to school is right around the corner. I get so consumed with teaching my students that I often put myself on the back burner. Definitely incorporating these tips into my new school routine, especially number 1. Thank you! 🙂
    xo
    Hannah
    wakeandconquer.wordpress.com

    • Thank you so much for your comment, Hannah! I hope you find that these tips will help you now that it’s almost time for back-to-school season!

  • Mary La Fornara

    Great tips! It’s all about balance!

  • The email thing is something I have to work on! I seriously always check them!

    • I think we all have a bad habit of checking our emails. It’s best to not think about it, and try your best to keep your phone and email away after 5.

  • I’m so bad for working from my desk during lunch and I really should dedicate a set time to step away from the desk, go outside, sit in my car etc. and just unwind for a few minutes before going back to it. Great tips! 🙂

    • Thank you, Cara! And yes, make sure you’re taking a real lunch break. You only get a few minutes for that time for yourself and you deserve it!

  • Neely

    These are awesome tips and they really do help!

  • Leigh

    Saying no is often the hardest part, but when you realize that you can’t do everything the balance is so much more even. Great advice.

    • I couldn’t agree more with you because we always feel inclined to say yes even when we have already taken on too much for ourselves. Thank you so much for your comment!

  • There are definitely some things on this list I need to work on a bit! For instance, waking up early enough to enjoy it, taking a real break at lunch, and taking small breaks if I am too stressed. Thank you for sharing these tips!

    • Thank you so much for your comment, Erin! I completely hear you with not taking a real break for lunch. There are some days where I would feel so overwhelmed that I would take a working lunch. Now, I set my timer for 30 minutes, take a quick 5 minute walk, eat for about 15 minutes, and then relax for the final few moments before returning to work! Always take a little break if you’re feeling stressed–it truly helps!

  • Lauren Norton

    These are great tips! Thanks for sharing! Balancing work and life is HARD so it is super important to take breaks and have time for yourself.

    • I couldn’t agree more! I would always respond to emails after 5 p.m. but now I do my best to stray away from my phone altogether (unless I’m scrolling on social media, haha!)

  • Great tips. As a coach this is something that my business clients struggle with a lot. Well done.

    • Thank you so much for your kind comment, Wendy! I truly appreciate it 🙂

  • All Things Gold ✨

    These are such great tips! As someone who is starting their full-time job in a month, I look forward to applying these!

    • Congrats on your new job! That’s such an exciting moment 🙂 Make sure to keep your work-life balance in check because it can be very easy to lose sight of it!

  • This post is perfect considering sometimes I feel like work runs my life and I don’t have that solid work/life balance.

    xoxo, Jenny

    • Try to work at the balance every single day. Once you begin with small steps, it will get easier to stop checking emails, give yourself time to relax, etc. Thanks, Jenny!

  • Sarah Jean

    Great tips. Unfortunately I have to look at my email after five though as I’m “on call” as a spokesperson…and our hours go to 6pm and beyond. BUT even with that I do need to find ways to take mental breaks throughout the day and definitely turn off my phone on vacation. 🙂

    • The mental breaks are a huge component that people overlook when it comes to your overall health and how to achieve work-life balance. Thank you so much for your comment, Sarah!

  • Emily Bendler

    These are great tips! I definitely don’t take work home with me, but I do have to be on call at all times in case of emergency.

    • I hear ya there! I have to be on call as well. Granted, most of the time everything is fine–but you never know and always feel like you need to be ready and you’re almost in work “mode” in case.

  • It definitely helps to have tips like these in place in your life in order to achieve a work-life balance. Sometimes, it is so hard to stick to it though, especially working from home like I do… but I am working towards it! Pinned!

    • Thank you so much for sharing and for your comment, Gina! I think it’s so important to make the effort each day–even when some days are more difficult than others!

  • I really and truly need to work on this, because my work life and home life go hand in hand! Working from home can be such a struggle sometimes! It’s definitely a dream at times, too! I need to get better about getting up earlier and taking my time to get ready and greet the day before jumping into work. And I also need to take short breaks! I am good at taking decent lunch breaks and turning on a tv show so I can take a break!

    • Thank you so much for your comment, Chelsie! I agree that working from home can be difficult with blogging because you never can “clock out” when social media and your work is always at your fingertips. But, the more you practice time for yourself each day, the easier it will be to stick to those habits! 🙂

  • I struggle so much with “No email after 5” I am constantly checking my email! lol… I guess I have to put that on practice and see the effects!

  • Handling emails is a biggie for me! I always wanted to respond right away, especially to notes from readers, so it’s SO hard to turn off and unplug. But it definitely does a 180 on my overall mood and productivity later on when I just balance that out!

    Coming Up Roses

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