Work and life balance is definitely amongst the one of the most difficult things to achieve, especially when you’re in the middle of a project or have new working lining up; it’s hard to say to opportunities that you know come to you only once, sometimes once in a while. There are only so many hours in any given day, and sometimes most of those hours are spend behind the desk — doing whatever it is that we love to do.
I think there are a few ways to look at this, first of all — we need to ask ourselves whether we love the job that we’re currently doing, and do we feel satisfied with ourselves and the work we’ve done by the time the day ends. For me, this has definitely been one of the “leading” questions for achieving balance between my ordinary life and my work life, and I can see how these days both are working together simultaneously.
Sometimes, asking such a question simply isn’t possible, since we might be stuck with a job that’s not in our best interests, but we still need to pay the bills, or perhaps we’re waiting for something better to show up, and deal with what we have at the moment. Whichever it is, there are practical ways of solving some of our problems with feeling not in perfect balance between our working and daily life. Shall we take a look at them?
1. Balance or Integration
As I mentioned above, these days both on and off work is becoming more and more of the same thing. Writing is what I do for a living, and it spreads throughout my projects everywhere. When I’m not writing, I’ll be either reading or out and about thinking about the next thing to put together. Whereas working someplace where I’m doing something that doesn’t align with my highest qualities might feel draining and strenuous. Look for ways to make work part of your life, if only little by little every day.
2. Less Work and More Work
I also think that there are periods when we’re almost forced to work extra hard and with extra pressure on our being, and sometimes there are times when we’re working less and we’ve got plenty of time to get our personal things done. It all depends on the season/weather/demand and so forth. If we can recognize these patterns in our work life, it will be easier to notice when to relax and take it easy, and when to invest more of our energy in the work that we do.
3. Give Work Meaning
Have you ever been in a job where you’ve felt totally out of place? Like every day is dragging about and there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel? I’m sure we’ve all had that work experience before, which is why it’s so crucial to give our work meaning and find the fun parts in it — rather than focusing solely on the negatives. It can be tough, but it can be done, in fact — it should be done. Whatever it is that you do, find the few things that make you happy about your job and keep returning there to feel empowered and happy.
4. Careful With Sacrifices
I’m, of course, talking about relationships. Both on and off work. With too much work, it might seem like we’re too busy to reach out to our friends and relatives, but the truth is that this is often an illusion that we portray upon ourselves to get more stuck with our work schedule, sometimes we do this intentionally, sometimes not. The most important thing is to recognize these patterns and act upon them as soon as we feel like we’re almost living within our work and treat it is as our primary identity. Make amends where possible.
5. Monitor Your Healthiness
The reason for using the word healthiness here is because it spreads out to many different areas, such as whether we feel generally healthy, whether we’re tired or not, is our sleep good and rewarding, and are we generally happy with ourselves? Whenever we start to spend most of our life/time with our job, those things usually start to go downwards and we can instantly notice a change in how we feel overall, but also how much energy we have for others things in our lives — where sometimes it gets to a point where we just want to relax and sleep to feel better again.
How to achieve work and life balance
These are some of the insights that are good to keep with us whenever we start to notice some repetitive patterns in our working life, and it’s so easy to overcome any unpleasant experiences by giving ourselves that special time that our soul is craving so much.