World over working hours have changed, it’s increased. Advancement in technology keeps everyone connected 24/7, and many are in jobs where they can be considered “always on” the job. Many more have turned workaholics. Balancing work and personal life is a big challenge now. Studies show that increased working hours compounded with stress has a damaging effect on the mental well-being. Work-related stress leads to physical and emotional exhaustion, fatigue, and chronic insomnia. To protect oneself from the adverse effects of work-related stress, one needs to ensure a healthy work-life balance.
Here are 5-ways to ensure a healthy work-life balance.
Prioritize your Tasks
Work smart. Don’t end up in unstructured meetings which go on for long hours. It is counterproductive. Instead, spend time on more productive thoughts and activities. Prioritize your tasks, important to less important ones. Say for example; choose a task that needs to be addressed in the next 2 to 3 hours, do it first. Then move on to the next.
Take a break
Working long hours without taking a break is counterproductive, science proves it. The body activates Cortisol, a stress hormone, which can play havoc with your psyche. Take mini breaks every 30 minutes. Ensure blood flow to all parts of the body. A few minute walk around your office block will do. Stay relaxed. The sky is not going to fall on your head.
Take care of yourself
Eat healthy, avoid junk foods. Add fresh fruits, vegetables, and protein to your diet. Stay hydrated. Sleep well. Lack of sleep increase stress level and decreases energy level. Take time off to be with your family. Exercise daily to keep yourself fit. Relax your body and mind with meditation.
Learn how to say “No”
Don’t say ‘yes’ to all the requests that comes your way. Acknowledge that you cannot do everything and also “please” everyone at the same time. If the requests don’t fit your work schedule or priority, say “no” politely but firmly. Put your needs first, prioritizing some others needs over yours will make your productivity suffer.
Limit working hours
Consistently working for longer hours is not good. It is counterproductive. It drains your energy and can lead to burnout. Once you complete your day’s work, let it go. Go home, try again tomorrow. There are managers who want you to put in longer hours. You can do it once or twice, but not always. After all as the old adage goes “Health is Wealth”.