There are 168 hours in a week. If a person spends 45 hours at work, that leaves 123 hours. Subtracting eight hours per night for sleep leaves 67 hours for everything else. That sounds good, especially because for most people it outweighs the amount of time spent at work.
However, there are many demands on those 67 hours, including commuting, family time, catching up on work at home, and so on. Sometimes, 67 hours isn’t nearly enough time to check everything off the list. When that happens, many people begin to feel like they need better work-life balance.
Work-life balance sounds unattainable, doesn’t it? It sounds like an ideal in which work and life complement each other perfectly. However, it’s not about creating equality between the two. An article in the American Journal of Nursing explains that it simply “means balancing the two to achieve harmony in physical, emotional, and spiritual health.”
Aim for excellence
What exactly is perfection? It can be very subjective; one person’s perfect outcome may be different from what someone else hopes to achieve. However, perfectionists aim for perfection in all cases. Instead, it’s better to aim for excellence. It’s important to note that this is not a downgrade in expectations; it’s simply a different and less subjective way of defining a goal. This is true at work and at home; it will help create better balance in both settings, which will lead to better work-life balance overall.
Put downtime on the calendar
It may seem strange to think about scheduling downtime, but putting it on the calendar is an important step toward making sure it actually happens. An article on WebMd.com notes that putting downtime on the calendar provides an individual with something to look forward to. Another important benefit of scheduling: it provides an extra incentive to manage time wisely, which diminishes the likelihood of having to cancel.
The Mayo Clinic offers a few important lessons to help with achieving better work-life balance.
- Keep track of time – where do those 67 or so hours of non-work, non-sleep time go? If bringing work home is taking time away from family, could those tasks be completed during work hours or delegated to others?
- Work on the word “no” – “quit accepting tasks out of guilt or a false sense of obligation,” whether it’s for a child’s school or a neighborhood block party.
- Practice self-care – Eat healthy foods, get some exercise, and sleep enough. It sounds like very basic advice, but people who follow it generally feel better than those who don’t.
No one is immune
Everyone can struggle with balancing work and life at one time or another. It’s not limited to certain professions, gender, or people in workforce management positions. At 365 Healthcare Staffing Services, we help people find employment, and we help employees find their own work-life balance. We’d like to help you, too, so call (310) 436-3650 today!