According to The Onion, the only way to achieve effective work/life balance is to not have a job.
The reality is most of us need a job, and that having one is good for our health and wellbeing (link to “Is work good for your mental health article).
So how do you achieve the much heralded ‘Work/life balance’?
Work, love and play
Harvard professor Erik Erikson said that the richest and fullest lives attempt to achieve an inner balance between three realms: work, love and play.
He believed you need to pursue all three of these areas with equal dedication in order to have a fulfilled and happy life.
We think it’s quite a handy way of looking at your life – after all your life doesn’t stop when you’re at work – it’s all connected.
So how do you balance your approach to work, love and play?
A good start is to think about the time you are currently committing to each, and whether there’s a good balance. Are there any changes you need to make to get everything in equilibrium?
Here’s some questions to get you thinking:
- Are you spending enough time with those you love?
- Do you prioritise ‘me time’ activities?
- Is there enough time in your day set aside for healthy eating and exercise?
- Are you spending time on the things you like doing? How can you restructure your day so you can?
- Are you able to shut your phone off and enjoy the moment?
- Instead of having different to-do lists for different aspects of your life, can you combine them altogether?
- How many hours a week do you work? How many would you like to work?
- Do you love your job? If you don’t, and it’s not possible to change it anytime soon, are there other outside of work things you can do that you’re passionate about?– eg volunteering in your community, or joining a hobby group.
You can’t get everything done in life but you can do the things that are most important. The first step is working out what those things are. Good luck!