Spring is the season of new beginnings and fresh starts. If you find yourself working too much and sacrificing time with your friends and family, or time for yourself, you should reassess your activities and try to find a new balance that will make you happy. Here are five ways to even the scales between work and life.
Evaluate Your Time
Not taking time for yourself can lead to burn out, so it’s important to set boundaries that will maintain a healthy work-life balance. When you’re at the office you shouldn’t let your personal life get in the way of your work. Apply the same philosophy to your life and don’t allow work to interrupt your time with friends and family. Setting boundaries will also give you extra time to rest and recharge, allowing you to do your best at your job when you’re there.
Set Realistic Goals
You don’t have to make sweeping changes to your life to achieve a better work/life balance. Try setting realistic goals and slowly build more activities into your schedule that are important to you. Leave the office earlier one or two nights per week, spend 30 minutes to an hour a week on simple hobbies you enjoy like reading, taking a walk or listening to music. You can also plan a getaway weekend for a longer period of relaxation. You don’t have to go far. But the change in venue can be a great way to recharge your batteries.
Exercise will invigorate and refresh you because it pumps up your brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters, called endorphins. Physical activity will enhance your mood and your sleep, which can be disrupted by the anxiety or pressure you may feel at work. Try simple exercises like taking a walk or stretching, then build up to running or going to the gym.
Take a look at the activities in your life that don’t enhance your career or personal life and replace them with something different and exciting. Spring is a great time to try new ideas, start new projects or activities, and take advantage of new opportunities that challenge you and make work/life balance better. Take up a hobby that allows you to spend more time with friends and family, and brings out your creative side. Consider Spring activities like gardening, playing sports or hiking.
To help prevent yourself from doing work-related activities in your off-hours, turn off your cell phone while you are with family or friends and don’t answer any work emails. Today’s technology like smartphones, tablets and laptops make it much too easy to access your work when you are at home or on vacation, but you don’t have to be a slave to them.