3 Work Life Balance Tips

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Work-life balance is a big catchphrase right now.  At times, it seems impossible when you are working from home.  Work is always there and home is now a workplace, a relaxing space, and an entertaining center.

Schedule everything

1. The best way to gain/have/maintain work-life balance is to schedule everything.  It will seem daunting at first because you need to schedule exercise, work, your children’s activities, beauty appointments, laundry, grocery, shopping, time off, cleaning, yard work, sports, entertainment etc.  Once you have completed this activity you have a better understanding of what your day is like, how your week will function and what is going on in the month.

Follow the plan

2. In order to be successful you must be ridge with yourself and stick to your schedule.  If you allow yourself to give up “life ” time for work you will probably never get it back.  Some people say they can’t be creative if they are scheduled.  Think closely about that argument. Perhaps you don’t know how to schedule your time or maybe you don’t want to have enough time to get everything done.  Remember scheduling allows you to be creative within each block of time and activity. Scheduling helps you to set up routines for getting tasks completed.  This helps you to spend less mental energy worrying.  Use that time and energy on more important things.

Create happiness in your life

3. Work-life balance is important because it allows you to be functioning at your best.   Your stress is reduced if you can accomplish the things that are important to you, have the relationships you want, and are accountable to those that are depending on you. Happiness and contentment can be yours for the taking.

women isting on a chair with her knees up to her chest with a cup of coffee

What would be your 4th tip to create a better work-life balance?  Post it in the comments. 

Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She has been working with clients since 2006 to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She uses her love of physical activity to reduce clutter, in your home and office. She guides and supports you to manage your time. If you’re in a difficult transition Julie can coach you to break-free of emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. Online courses are available to help instruct, coach and support your organizing projects. Get started by downloading Tips for Reorganizing 9 Rooms.

Contact her at julie@mindoverclutter.ca

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Comments

  1. I agree! We all have unique energy cycles, and being aware of what time of day is best for different types of activities is key to productivity. I know an author who schedules time in the morning for focused writing, and it doesn’t make her less creative. If anything, it means she can be more creative, because during that time she isn’t distracted by email or other things.

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  3. You’ve noticed I said I’m going slow down in terms of eating junk, I’m not gonna just
    stop eating completely, no way. When you are looking at a diet, when it is something you can’t be able to sustain search
    for another one. Also a fantastic tip for preparing healthy food
    choices is to find some healthy cook books and pick some recipes that appeal to you
    and take a moment out from your day and take a proactive role in preparing delicious healthy meals.

    • I look at cookbooks and find healthy recipes and then make up a menu rotation schedule that is 2 months long. Every once in a while winter and summer I will make up a new menu rotation schedule and keep some old favourite recipes and add some new one.

  4. I pretty much live by my plan, so I’m a believer. I guess maybe I would say to give yourself a day off (or a morning off, is that is all you can swing). A time you can count on to be off-duty. We all need it!

    • Planning downtime is important. Thanks for suggesting that as a fourth tip. I have tried to encourage clients to book one day a month as free and they are not allowed to prebook anything for that day. The idea is to have a “catch-up” day for things that didn’t get done or last-minute things that come up. It can be hard for some people to have a completely unscheduled day on their calendar. They want to fill it up. As you said it is important to have time for yourself.

  5. Great tips! I would add to your suggestions that one should create a space and time to have quiet time. This will allow you to stay focused on tasks and get through jobs quickly, saving you time and headaches. If you can not allocate a quiet space in your home, buying a perfect pair of noise-canceling headsets works well.

    • A good suggestion is to have a way to be uninterrupted so you can concentrate. I have suggested letting people know when they cannot come to you with problems, ideas, suggestions or just to talk. Put a note somewhere so they know this 1 hour a day of time is not available to them. Great fourth tips.

  6. Work/life balance is essential. And especially with more people working from home than ever, it becomes even more important to figure out what your right balance feels like.

    You asked what my 4th tip would be. As much as I love schedules and planning, I think #4 would be “Embrace flexibility.” Life will have challenges and surprises. And if we’ve scheduled every detail of our lives, it can create more stress than if we have a general plan with some room to shift as needed.

    I like to use my calendar to schedule actual appointments, client sessions, and other personal commitments. But then I look at the ‘white space’ for deciding what specific other tasks or projects I will accomplish during those times. The white space is flexible, which works for me. It might not work for everyone.

    • I like the idea of white space. For white space, I have a list of things that need to be done soon and I pick a task to match the amount of time I have. Before I became a Professional Organizer my life was very scheduled so I could get everything done each week, household work, children’s activities, volunteer commitments and work. Now I have to be very flexible because my client’s schedule can change quickly and that impacts my schedule for the day. Thanks for the 4th tip.

  7. Since I’m reading Oliver Burkeman’s Four Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals, I’d say that a fourth tip would be to understand (and accept) that life is finite, and not only do you have to learn to stay no to the things you don’t want to do, but accept that you must say no to some of the things you DO want to do so that you can focus on the things you MOST want to do. It’s a heady concept to realize that our productivity efforts (and your three are excellent) can only take us so far.

    And yes, Linda and Sabrina are right; we can schedule all of our must-dos, but sometimes we need to make sure we schedule, or at least leave room, for our buffer zones and white space. They say that the advent of the smartphone leaves us incapable of being bored, but that in boredom lives creativity and genius. We need those quiet, still, unplanned moments so we can allow for serendipity. (And it’s so difficult for those of us inclined to plan everything!)

    • Thank you for this 4th tip. Today I was thinking of when I had a landline I would usually sit down and make a phone call have my calendar and information available and concentrate on the conversation. Now phone calls happen “whenever” and don’t give you that time to stop and talk they are jammed in on the run. Smartphones let us easily fill white space with things to do. Sometimes, as you say, white space needs to be there for us to think, reflect, recuperate and enjoy life. The choice of what we do sounds a little like the Pareto Principle. So mostly what you want to do and cut down on the things you don’t like and can’t do.

  8. Julie, I am also a believer in the fact that scheduling allows you to have balance in your life. Additionally, I agree with the others that you can’t schedule everything. We know that life happens – allow for flexibility. My fourth tip is to schedule in blocks or windows of time unless it is an actual appointment. Something like: between 10 – 11 i wil do xyz. That means that if you accomplish xyz quickly you are leaving space to do something not scheduled.

    • Scheduling in blocks of time is great for me. WHen I have a large amount of work to do I schedule a 90 minute block, 15 minute break, 90 minute block, 30 minute lunch and then a 60 minute block. I found it worked well for me because I knew how long I had to work before a break and a change in activity. I was flexible changing the amount of time each work block was if my focus was not there that day.

  9. Great ideas here. I think the middle one is the most important… stick to the plan! So many times, we get caught up in creating the perfect plan but then we don’t stick to it.

    • Thanks for your comment. Some people like planning but following through is difficult. You’re right get a plan, dit doesn’t have to be perfect just stick to it. You can make adjustments later.

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