In the last two weeks, I shared with you the key takeaways from the first and second parts of my leadership development program, Work-Life Balance Wisdom: The Why, What and How of Better Balance. You can read about determining your why here and your what here.
This week, we’ll explore the how of better balance. Here are three key strategies to get you on track.
- Put Me on My “To Do” List. When it comes to better balance, energy management is just as important as time management. Making empowering changes and maintaining healthy habits take vitality and commitment. When you’re not strong, you will tend to slip back into your old routine. That’s why it’s so important to make conscious choices every day to take care of yourself. Want to improve your work-life balance? Start with the basics, including eating healthy, drinking plenty of water, being physically active and getting enough sleep. Then, go deeper by choosing to associate with people who live healthy, balanced lives; enjoying a hobby; expressing gratitude; and finding the time to relax and recharge when you need it.
- Create the Space. Clutter distracts and confuses us. It drains our energy and keeps us out of balance. While most of us think of physical clutter, like a messy office and overstuffed closet, there’s also technical clutter, like your over-reliance on your cell phone and too much time on the Internet, and emotional clutter, like unnecessary obligations and toxic people in your life. Want to improve your work-life balance? Make a list of all your ongoing commitments, from your professional and personal memberships to committees on which you serve that are not directly related to your job responsibilities. Rank them on a scale of 1 to 10 in terms of importance and consider dropping or delegating anything less than a 7. By cleaning out the clutter of unnecessary obligations—as well as other forms of clutter—you’ll think clearer, have more energy, and be open to helpful people and ideas.
- Pay Attention! Staying present is about enjoying what is right now, instead of lamenting the past or worrying about the future. By being more mindful, you can reduce stress, show more compassion to yourself and others, and increase your satisfaction with your work and life. Want to improve your work-life balance? Most of us hop from one accomplishment to the next, never savoring our successes or “catching the gifts.” Think about how you can catch the gifts of a job well done, a genuine compliment from a colleague or at the start of a well-earned vacation. And, catch the gifts of lessons learned from your mistakes. That’s the best way to keep from repeating them.
Even one of these strategies can improve your work-life balance and, together, they complement each other. Start with the one that resonates the most with you and then add another until they all become habits that support your success.
I love helping professionals enjoy better balance so they can be more productive at work and present at home! Contact me at 770-565-1231 or firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss how I can design an empowering program for your organization.