Work-life balance. Does it exist, or is it a myth? Rumour has it there will always be one thing that takes control while the other will fall slightly behind. True or not, there are ways to find your own kind of balance without feeling like everything is completely off-kilter. Here’s how…
Before we get started, work-life balance will look different for everyone, and there is no one size fits all approach. Your schedule and commitments will be different to the next person, and that should be celebrated. Don’t put yourself into a box that was never yours to start with, and make sure the balance works for you.
Learn to say ‘no’
There is so much power in saying no to something, and it doesn’t have to be classed as aggressive or assertive. You can turn down plans, extra work, commitments and opportunities if you don’t feel they fit into what you already have planned. Protect your energy and your schedule, and don’t be afraid to turn things down.
Stick to a schedule
Create a schedule for the day or for the week that works for you, and make sure you stick to it. If that means having lunch at the same time each day, or clocking off from work at precisely 5pm, then stick to it. The same goes for your personal life too, whether it be a Monday night yoga class, a jog on a Thursday morning, or making sure you grab ten minutes a day to thumb through the pages of your latest read. Make sure you stick to the schedule and be realistic with your time too!
Appreciate the ebb and the flow
Know that no two days are going to be the same, and there is going to be some ebb and flow in the balance. This means that one day, work may take more of a priority than your personal life and other days, the scales may be tipped in the opposite direction. It is all part of the journey and part of the flow, so embrace it and don’t be too hard on yourself if it does take a little while to find some sort of balance and your own kind of normal.
Stay in control of your tech
You can turn your phone notifications off during the working day, and you can shut down your laptop when work ends, and it is time to play. Make sure your tech is working for you, and you are not becoming a slave to either screens. You are in control and have the ability to tailor when and what you consume, and when you log out of your computer and emails for the day as well.
Remember you are human
You are a human being, and so, you need to treat yourself like one. You cannot and will not do it all, and nor should you have to. Make sure you keep this top of mind and know that you have the power and control to craft your own work-life balance. There is no one who can do everything in a day, no matter what people or the internet tell you, so be nice to yourself and don’t beat yourself up.
Don’t sacrifice self-care
Self-care is usually the first thing to go on the list when work and life ramp up. When you are at your busiest, that is when you need it most, let us tell you. Make sure you are taking the time to do the things that light you up and keep you on track because if you sacrifice self-care, the wheels will start to fall off, and it is a lot harder to build back from. Prioritise self-care and the things that bring you joy, whether it be yoga, running, a bubble bath or time to journal. It will look different for everyone, and that is the beauty of it.
A 50/50 balance might not be what you are looking for. Everyone is different, and some may want more work than play, and others will work the opposite way around. There is no right or wrong answer here, and only you will know what works and what feels comfortable to you.
There will also be times in your life where one element of your life has to take the lead for one reason or another, and that is more than okay as well. Embrace the journey and the changes, and as long as it is working for you, then it doesn’t have to make sense to anyone else. Work-life balance is a concept, and while it may not be achievable to always have that 50/50, creating something that is your own and sings to your own tune is so important, so make sure you’re taking time out to assess and acknowledge that.
If self-care is the one thing that always heads south, and we know that it often is, then check out MADE on Demand which is our membership. It means you can work out, do yoga, meditate and more at a time that suits you, in the comfort of your own home. So, instead of rushing to a studio or missing classes due to work commitments, it means you have the freedom and flexibility to prioritise self-care as part of your own schedule. There are also recipes, sleep stories and more content for you to enjoy on there, so there is absolutely something for everyone. You can get a free trial if you would like to take a tour of the membership and try out a few classes, before you decide whether or not it is right for you.
However you choose to prioritise you, make sure you stick to it and don’t let it slip. No amount of work or friendships will be able to replace the relationship you have with yourself, so make sure you are taking care of number one, so that everything else in your life has the freedom to grow and to flow.