Working from home over the last year and a half + has certainly changed our “ways of working”. It is easier than ever to just keep on working…logging in beyond traditional work hours…because your office is right there! On top of that, kids are home (more) and the number of chores seem to have grown (no surprise there!).
Are you now finding yourself wondering…”What is normal? What’s too much? And when is it time to leave your job because it just isn’t right?”
Having work/life balance may not come easy but it is necessary for your sanity. Life is short – why not set yourself up to enjoy it?! Read on for tips to create the right work-life balance
Create a dedicated workspace.
Your space for “work” must be separate from your space for “play”. Chances are if you’re working in your bedroom or living room, you won’t leave that room all day. You will be more likely to log back in during your “off time” and will eventually hit a wall. If you’re able to, create a workspace that is outside of the area you associate with “turning off” and “relaxing”! Whether or not you have space for a true and isolated “office”, you can still create a dedicated workspace (potentially with the help of a room divider – check out some ideas here) that is furnished with a true desk, upright office chair, and monitor.
Dress the part.
Sometimes the simplest things make the biggest impact. By “dressing” for work, or at least changing out of your PJs and into “real” clothes, you are telling your mind that you should be “on” and “alert”. PJs = relaxation; a collared shirt or blouse = work.
Communicate your needs and your limits to your team.
While new job commitments and a growing scope is a sign of success, know your limits. Sometimes you can’t single handedly do it all – and there just are not the hours in the “workday” to get it done. Bringing in members from your team to help you out on a project is not a sign of weakness, it is a sign of care for the project you are working on and wanting to see the project succeed. Similarly, setting boundaries and saying “no” to certain projects could actually increase the quality of your output on the projects you see to fruition. The moral of the story – set the right expectations for your teammates, stakeholders, and clients, and don’t be afraid to speak up when it comes to your limited bandwidth.
Sitting at my computer for 8+ hours straight a day is the best – said no one ever. Take your breaks, you deserve them! Breaks will prevent burnout. Remember to move to your separate space (bedroom or living room) associated with “relaxation” and “time off”. Get out of your “office” when you take a break.
Create a daily check-list of MUST-do’s.
Yeah, we’ve all heard of to-do’s, but how about MUST-do’s? To-dos are a very easy way to become overwhelmed when you see a list of 50 tasks you must complete. Instead, write down your daily MUST-do’s, and then if you complete all of those tasks, you can move on to any other tasks. This will help you focus on the “big rocks” first and make the most impact with your limited time.