Many people I speak with feel overwhelmed by work. They feel they don’t have time to get everything done, and still have the time and energy to enjoy other aspects of their lives.
The truth is, we are often so busy working, worrying, and feeling frustrated, that we don’t take the time to stop and really look at what is going on with us, and what needs to shift to allow us to live happier, healthier lives.
Steps to take to find a healthy work/life balance
1) Write a list of what is working in your life, and what is not working. Often, it’s easy to say nothing is working, when in reality, some good things are probably working in your life. Look at all areas of your life-family, friends, relationships, career, finances, health, spirituality, and creativity. For each category, write out what is working and what isn’t to give you a clearer picture of where you currently are, and what needs to shift.
2) With this list, come back to your career. What needs to change? When our life is all about our work, we often neglect the other areas of our ife, and as a consequence, we are out of balance and unfulfilled. What needs to shift? Do you need a job with different hours? Is there a conversation you need to have with your boss or co-workers to help you feel more productive and inspired at work? How can you prioritize your day? Find the most important jobs that need to be done and do them first. That way, by the end of the work day, you know you’ve accomplished the big tasks. Maybe it’s time for a new career all together. What is the first step you can take towards changing jobs or careers?
3) Write out a list of what is missing in your life. Is it a new relationship, better fitness, a new creative outlet, time to travel? By writing, we see what is missing and what we really want. Pick one or two categories and write out three things you need to do this week to begin to make these dreams come to life. Get into action.
4) Look closely at the excuses you tell yourself. Why are you working so much and feeling dissatisfied? Are you worried about money? Why? Do you need to prove something to yourself and others? Is working too hard and too many hours a way to avoid being in a relationship, or try something new? Often we are stuck and unfulfilled, but we don’t know why, and we may be unhappy, but we become comfortable staying stuck. Change can be scary, but the freedom and happiness of experiencing something new lies on the other side of fear.
5) Find a partner or community. Get Support. You don’t need to do this alone. We often feel fear or too much pride to ask for help when we need other people and they need us. Who in your life could you work with? Find a coach or a partner to work with on moving forward in your life. Create a community. Find others who can support you, and also need and want your support.