Tips to Improve Work-Life Balance

I’m not perfect. I’ve learnt to balance work and life a lot better now, and I’m still learning. It took me a long time to get here – practice makes perfect. Today, I’m going to share some of the things that work for me with you guys.

When the societal view on adulthood revolves around all work and no life, it’s no easy feat to balance a nine-to-five and a life beyond it. That said, it isn’t at all impossible when you put your mind to it. To aid you in your search, here are some tips to get you through each week.

For starters, instead of trying to cram everything into a needlessly stressful 24 hours, opt to wake up a tad earlier to give yourself productive quiet time to get some work done. Waking up at 4 onwards not only gives you more hours in a day but can be a great way to collect your thoughts before the hustle and bustle kicks in.

Another effective strategy is to overlap your activities whenever you can. Take for example:
Taking your dog out for a walk when you’re on your way to pick up dry-cleaning. Little overlaps like these can help strike items off your to-do list a lot quicker than doing them individually and gives you an allowance of spare time for relaxation.

Additionally, when a good portion of work-life is work, self-care often gets lost in the process. It doesn’t have to take a whole day. Sometimes a half hour is all it takes to help you maintain that balance and reduce your stress levels. For some it’s a short evening run, a chapter of a new book or even a nice, relaxing bath.

It’s easy to lose yourself in work once you’ve begun, which means it is all the more important for you to block out time for yourself everyday. The world won’t implode just because you’ve taken some time for yourself to do the things you love or pursue social engagements.

Speaking of, having a social life should be somewhere on your agenda. When you have a consistently heavy workload, it’s not easy to plan social interactions around your work. Instead, do the opposite and create a constant in your social schedule by planning recurring activities like a weekly lunch with your closest friends or a movie night every Saturday night. That way you can plan work around social activities without the guilt of missing out.

Weekends and vacation periods are sacred. Time away from work shouldn’t be focused on more work (i.e. the mundane chores of adulthood). Instead of wasting your entire weekend on turning your entire house spotless, spread out your chores over the course of a week. That way, they’re not so much of a burden and you’ll finally get to relax on your days off.

Some tips to further lighten the burden of chores include planning and laying it out to accomplish them as quickly and efficiently as possible. For example: coordinate grocery shopping by assigning items to family members, using coupon apps, or if you’re shopping solo, pick up items according to the aisles.

Think of your least favourite chores as bitter medication – you don’t like it but you have to take it and the only way to get past that dread is to get it over with as quickly as possible. Strike that unpleasant task off the list by doing it at the beginning of the week and avoid the strain of burnout when the time comes for you to sit back and relax. Do laundry early in the week and move on to lighter chores like vacuuming or taking out the trash with the ease of mind from having defeated your greatest trial.

If you have any other tips, do feel free to share them in the comments section. Till the next time!