Do you live to work, or work to live?
Work-life balance has always a struggle, but as more and more sectors go mobile, allowing for home-based careers, the task of aligning the work day with necessary life priorities can rival the toughest commute. At Premier Personal Services, we love exploring ways to help you minimize this struggle.
So how can you enjoy the benefits of working from home without burning out? According to an article produced by globally acclaimed healthcare pioneer F. Hoffman-La Roche Ltd., work-life balance is possible for those willing to set limits.
So where can you set limits?
Life is relationships. In order to maintain that elusive work-life balance, you must limit certain work relationships in order to enhance those relationships most important to you.
For example, as much as you love your boss, is it really necessary to meet in person once a week? Learn to get comfortable with powerful tools like GoToMeetings or Zoom, which offers incredible benefits like saved chats, recorded meetings, and screen share options - and all for free! Skype, Facetime, and old-fashioned voice conferences are also valuable assets to keep you connected without undue stress on your schedule.
Even if a client requires a meeting, you can always negotiate to meet them halfway between your home and the office. Doing so communicates that you value your time, which will help them to do the same.
Another important place to set limits on relationships is your own attachment to your skill sets. Yes, you may be able to make graphics on Canva, think up your own blog post, brainstorm a marketing plan, feed the dog, get groceries and call the plumber all in time to pick up the kids for the soccer game, but should you?
In order to set appropriate limits to protect your relationships while allowing your business to grow, you may have to think of yourself as an executive rather than a jack-of-all-trades. That means you may need an executive assistant to handle your social media postings. Perhaps your assistant could handle the plumber's visit and the grocery shopping so you can make the soccer game.
Success doesn't mean you do it all. It means you learn to delegate whenever possible so you can enjoy the relationships you've been given.
Stress may be an inherent side effect of your career, but working from home shouldn't be a stress factor in itself. If it is, perhaps you could limit your stress by implementing these ideas:
• Schedule breaks. Yes, when your client/employer wants a project finished yesterday, it can be tempting to chain yourself to your laptop and let nothing short of a tornado pull you away. How much more efficient could you be, though, if you allowed yourself time to decompress, stretch, get some sunshine, and even laugh for five minutes out of each hour? You might be surprised.
By scheduling breaks into your day, you can train your body to expect regular respite from screaming deadlines. This will keep mini-emergencies from sapping your reserves, which will translate into better long-term health while allowing you to enjoy life today.
• Be proactive when you're under fire. Rather than bite your nails to the quick, step back from difficult situations and read a chapter from that book that inspires you. Rather than complain to your online buddies about your impossible to-do list, watch a YouTube video by someone who's conquered your problem.
Limit negativity. Nurture inspiration.
• Use stress-busting tools to maximize your productivity. If that means you spend a few more dollars on a chair that spins easily and doesn't run over your toes, go for it as soon as your budget allows. If the ergonomic keyboard means you avoid weeks out for carpal tunnel surgery, it's worth it.
Be kind to yourself, and don't strain your body unnecessarily when simple changes like better lighting, raised or lowered desktops, or an updated prescription can make the difference between enjoying your job and enduring it.
Analyze how you work best, and limit the choices you have to make so your daily routines enhance your strengths. Along with this, plan routine maintenance for your family, health, financial, and social goals on a long-term basis, and let nothing pull you away from these priorities.
A great way to do this is to enlist a life or business coach to help you strategize the logistics that broad plans can forget.
For example, "I'm going to start work early because my creativity is gone after 7pm" is a great in theory, but without practical logistics like "I'm going to start getting ready for bed in time to be asleep by 10," your good intentions will go the way of the New Years diet resolutions.
Even if you don't use a coach, you can glean ideas from your local network or a work buddy can help you construct a routine conducive to your workday.
Work-life balance isn't a fairy tale meant to entice frazzled office workers into an even more frazzling home-based work experience. It's completely possible, but it may take serious changes if you want to enjoy the full benefits you ought to experience working from home. Premier Personal Services exists to help you navigate your way to a harmonious work-life balance.
To learn more about our executive and personal assistants, home organization experts, decluttering techs and concierge services, don't wait to call us at (615) 522-5265 for a free personal consultation to see how we can help you achieve work-life balance, whether you're working from home or hardly ever home. We can't wait to see how we can serve you!