Sure it’s definitely not easy to balance work, family and personal pursuits. The first step is definitely awareness that there is a work life balance problem in the first place. Life’s fluidity demands certain flexibility in both work and personal activities, and trying to schedule equal time for each can be frustrating and seemingly impossible. Some jobs have set schedules and when you leave for the day, the work stays behind until the next day.
Life Hack 1: Drop activities that drain your time or energy
It’s easy to get sucked into habits that make us less efficient without us realizing it, like keeping your Facebook tab open at work so you don’t miss something “important.” Do an inventory of activities that don’t enhance your life or career and minimize the amount of time you spend on them. Learn to use “no” judiciously and it will become a powerful tool in balancing work and family.
Life Hack 2: Rethink how you complete errands & chores
Life’s too short to stress over dust bunnies. Don’t like dust bunnies, hire someone to clean them. Yes, it costs money but it can be worth it. Are there errands you could outsource to someone else? What about ordering your groceries online with a service like FreshDirect or hiring a dog walker through Care.com? Check out Life hacker’s infographic on the services you can use to outsource your chores. Another option is to trade services with friends. The next time you get together with your friends, brainstorm how you can help each other out, save some money, and spend time doing tasks you enjoy that others might dread.
Life Hack 3: Get a move on
Research shows that exercise helps you remain alert. Finding time to hit the gym may be hard when you have a jam-packed schedule, but it will ultimately help you get more things done. Studies have found that exercise releases endorphins, boosts energy, and increases your ability to concentrate. If the gym’s not an option, are there people in your neighborhood you could meet several mornings a week before work to go for a brisk 20-minute walk? If mornings are a no-go, how about stepping away from your desk at lunchtime for a stroll? Remember: It’s all about work-life balance.
Life Hack 4: Unplug
There will always be another client, email or fire that needs tending, but it’s important to know when to say “enough” and step away. Trust that someone else can work on the problem or that the problem isn’t so dire that you can’t deal with it during the next business day. Study after study shows that people desperately need more sleep and that sleep deprivation affects your health and well-being. Exposure to electronics right before bed can negatively impact the quality of your sleep as well, so try to unplug an hour before bedtime.
Life Hack 5: Find time for yourself
What would you do if you had a whole day to yourself with no demands on your time? While most people don’t have the luxury of a whole day dedicated to relaxation, constantly putting off that downtime and putting everyone’s needs before your own will wear you down and make it even more difficult to meet all those demands. Even just a few minutes of “me time” a day will help to recharge your batteries.
Life Hack 6: Pace yourself
All new habits require time to build, so if you find yourself sneaking your iPhone into bed and three hours later you’re finally escaping the clutches of Instagram, that’s okay. Leave your phone downstairs tomorrow night. Little steps are the key to finding that balance, so start small and go from there. Most of all, know your boundaries and what works best for you then you can decide what really matters and prioritize the actions you take