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This is the sentence that brings the idea when we talk of work-life balance. When we work every day, all day, with no time set aside for living life, we just get more stressed. We are unable to find sight of reality. We may not have the touch with creativity, which is just as important for producing quality work as it is for innovating in business. There are no benefits to living a workaholic lifestyle.
A good work-life balance is very important in our life. Working is necessary and hard working is surely not bad but we need to find the right balance to keep our body healthy. Some rest is always necessary and that is something that the so called “workaholics” many times forget. A recent study shows that people who are stressed out in their jobs have a higher risk for dementia later in life. This is bad news for the American worker who often has long hours and can often loose work-life balance on their way to climbing to the top of the corporate ladder.
Deadlines, conflicting demands, promised delivery, increased accessibility, mixed with a need for a life outside of work, does not easily tip the scales to personal well-being. We have to focus on prioritizing and setting goals for ourselves, and create an action plan that will help us organize our life at work and in the home. Follow this Work Life Balance guide to get ourselves focused, and to create a plan that will help us to reduce stress.
Setting healthy boundaries is essential for a healthy work life balance. Be attuned to our patterns of working, as well as our high alert, medium concentration, and down times during a 24 hour cycle. This will help us allocate tasks to appropriate times in which to complete them. Three more GET’S to consider for a balanced life that will help us to sleep through out the night! These are Get Organized, Get Connected and Get Going. This paper deals with the ways to manage work life and reduce stress.
Ways to Manage Your Work-Life Balance and Reduce Stress
“Work to LIVE. Don’t LIVE to work.”
This is the sentence that brings the idea when we talk of work-life balance. It’s important to get a handle on mood swings or energy shifts if we want to maintain our work life balance and be successful in business. A good work-life balance is very important in our life. Working is necessary and hard working is surely not bad but you need to find the right balance to keep your body healthy. Some rest is always necessary and that is something that the so called “workaholics” many times forget. In today’s intensely competitive global environment, companies that support work-life balance practices and encourage their employees to manage their personal energy effectively will come out on top.
According to studies by the National Institute of Occupational Health, American businesses lose more that $300 billion a year due to absenteeism, employee turnover and workers’ compensation benefits directly resulting from overwork. We need to make priorities; it is necessary to take time for your family life. If you are married you need to spent time with your wife and your children. What are you with all the money if you don’t have time to spend together. It is very often better to divide your time in working time and relax time.
Work life imbalance leads to Stress:
Happiness on your work is very important but when you come home you need to put all the sorrows and problems of your work away .A stressful job can lead to unhappiness that seeps into your leisure life and leads to bad health. A recent study shows that people who are stressed out in their jobs have a higher risk for dementia later in life. This is bad news for the American worker who often has long hours and can often loose work-life balance on their way to climbing to the top of the corporate ladder.
There is good news though. Companies realize that they need healthy employees and some are starting to take notice of new ways to handle work-life balance. NPR reports said that in 2010 one percent of U.S. companies allow unlimited paid vacation for their employees. Employees are allowed to take time when they need it as long as they get their work done. This number also appears to be on the rise as companies pay more attention to results rather than tradition. As long as you’re working, juggling the demands of career and personal life will probably be an ongoing challenge. Use these ideas to help you find the work-life balance that’s best for you.
Strike a better work-life balance:
When your work life and personal life are out of balance, your stress level is likely to soar. Use these practical strategies to restore harmony. Deadlines, conflicting demands, promised delivery, increased accessibility, mixed with a need for a life outside of work, does not easily tip the scales to personal well-being. You have to focus on prioritizing and setting goals for yourself, and create an action plan that will help you organize your life at work and in the home. Follow this Work Life Balance guide to get you focused, and to create a plan that will help you to reduce stress.
Be attuned to your patterns of working, as well as your high alert, medium concentration, and down times during a 24 hour cycle. This will help you allocate tasks to appropriate times in which to complete them. Ultimately you want to optimize the time you have available in order to reach your goals. This means disciplining yourself to work on your most important tasks, even though they may only be bite-sized chunks of a much larger project, rather than do the quick and easy, less important tasks that will make you feel better to cross them off in short order on your to-do list but, in reality, will bring you no closer to your goals.
Three more GET’S to consider for a balanced life that will help you sleep through the night! i.e. Get Organized…Get Connected…Get Going
Tips for Better Work-Life Balance:
There was a time when the boundaries between work and home were fairly clear. Today, however, work is likely to invade your personal life – and maintaining work-life balance is no simple task. Still, work-life balance isn’t out of reach. Start by evaluating your relationship to work. Then apply specific strategies to help you strike a healthier balance.
Track your time. Track everything you do for one week, including work-related and personal activities. Decide what’s necessary and what satisfies you the most. Cut or delegate activities you don’t enjoy or can’t handle – or share your concerns and possible solutions with your employer or others.
Take advantage of your options. Ask your employer about flex hours, a compressed workweek, job sharing, telecommuting or other scheduling flexibility. The more control you have over your hours, the less stressed you’re likely to be.
Learn to say no. Whether it’s a co-worker asking you to spearhead an extra project or your child’s teacher asking you to manage the class play, remember that it’s OK to respectfully say no. When you quit doing the things you do only out of guilt or a false sense of obligation, you’ll make more room in your life for the activities that are meaningful to you and bring you joy.
Leave work at work. With the technology to connect to anyone at any time from virtually anywhere, there may be no boundary between work and home – unless you create it. Make a conscious decision to separate work time from personal time. When you’re with your family, for instance, turn off your cell phone and put away your laptop computer.
Manage your time. Organize household tasks efficiently, such as running errands in batches or doing a load of laundry every day, rather than saving it all for your day off. Put family events on a weekly family calendar and keep a daily to-do list. Do what needs to be done and let the rest go. Limit time-consuming.
Bolster your support system. At work, join forces with co-workers who can cover for you – and vice versa – when family conflicts arise. At home, enlist trusted friends and loved ones to pitch in with child care or household responsibilities when you need to work overtime or travel.
Nurture yourself. Eat healthy foods, include physical activity in your daily routine and get enough sleep. Set aside time each day for an activity that you enjoy, such as practicing yoga or reading. Better yet, discover activities you can do with your partner, family or friends – such as hiking, dancing or taking cooking classes.
ABCDE for restore work life balance:
Here’s a practice recommends for shifting from hopelessness to hopefulness. I successfully use it with my clients to help them restore their work life balance. He calls it ABCDE for:
Adversity — Beliefs — Consequences — Disputation — Energization.
A – Adversity
Start by spelling out the nature of the situation. Notice that you can experience hopelessness in response to ostensibly positive situations as well as to negative ones. For example, getting a new client or being accepted into a final round of interviews can upset your balance and send you into a whirlwind of anxiety and fear that produces just as much hopelessness and overwhelm as not getting the job or not making the cut.
B — Beliefs
This is your opportunity to spell out the thoughts and beliefs that are fueling the negative response.
C — Consequences
Look at the consequences of your beliefs — what happened as a result? How do you behave? What happened then?
D — Disputation
Actively dispute the beliefs that break your life balance and send you into the downward spiral. This is where you practice arguing with yourself in a productive way.
E — Energization
When you have been effective in disputing the problem beliefs, you feel an influx of energy, a sense of renewed hope, or at least of peacefulness.
Strategies for managing work life balance and reduce stress:
Here are nine strategies that, taken together, can help to change course without abandoning the destination and help you restore your work life balance:
1. Don’t panic.
Even if you feel panicky, you can choose modest, recoverable steps to address the situation. This is no time to get a divorce, fire an employee, or buy a new computer system. Tip: Talk with a coach or therapist to get perspective.
2. Return to Source.
Whatever our spiritual orientation or tradition, connect with what for you is the Source of life or spirit. Know that there is something larger than you that encompasses you. Spend at least 15 minutes each day connecting with that Source. (I like Mark Silver’s Remembrance Practice described in his free downloadable workbook Getting to the Core of Your Business.)
3. Take a body inventory.
Are you sleeping well? How are you eating? What’s your energy level? If these are not up to par, get a professional evaluation and take the steps that will restore your well being.
4. Tell the truth.
Sometimes energy flags when we’ve gotten into a pattern of pleasing others or living according to standards that are not our own. Notice if there is any imbalance. Notice where you’re being less than forthright and get clear about your motives, then clean it up. (Talking to a coach or therapist can facilitate clear, authentic communication.)
5. Keep good company.
Are you stimulated and encouraged by your peers and clients? Do you have great playmates? Playing on the wrong playground with the wrong kids is neither fun nor productive.
6. Tune Up Your Thinking.
There’s substantial evidence that managing the way we think can have a profound and lasting effect on mood and motivation.
7. Set Healthy, Flexible Boundaries.
Yes, real life and real business are intimately connected, but that doesn’t mean that you need to give up your privacy. To find your work life balance, set boundaries so that you can feel generous without feeling depleted and available without feeling invaded. Keep them flexible, because things change.
8. Create or Refine Systems.
We can’t manage real life and a real business or hope to achieve meaningful balance without good systems. Look at where things feel most out of sorts and resolve to create or improve a system to get things on track.
9. Keep the Goal, Drop the Plan.
Sometimes the best way to achieve a goal is to let go of our plans. Promptly and clearly revise commitments and offers as necessary to bring current activity in line with current resources. Why abandon ship when you can drop anchor while you make some repairs.
As for me, these strategies led me to postpone the re-launch of the Authentic Promotion teleclass and take a break from Internet marketing. Having stopped the war between myself and my business, I restored my work life balance and now feel more engaged with the things that I choose to take on (like writing this article.) My audacious goals are now shining possibilities instead of looming obligations, and if it takes a little longer to reach them, arriving will be all the sweeter.
Boost up Your Bottom Line by Encouraging Work-Life Balance:
Overwork also takes its toll on employee creativity. Bruce Van Horn, CEO of Yogaforbusiness.com and author of Firm Footing in a Changing Marketplace, writes, “We need to be human beings, not human doers. Here are seven practices you can introduce into your organization to increase productivity and creativity and reduce costs at the same time.
Train your managers to listen and use their best judgment to work with their employees to co-design arrangements that foster better work-life integration. Linda Stokes of PRISM International, Inc. puts it well: “The real challenge here is to identify actual requirements of the job versus traditions of the company or preferences of the manager that sometimes masquerade as real job requirements.” Use the actual job requirements and employee needs to design a better work-life integration plan.
Bring back lunch. Encourage everyone to regularly take at least 30 to 60 minutes for lunch away from the workplace.
Encourage real vacations. A real vacation involves more than a few days away from the office while fielding cell phone calls and e-mail. Encourage managers to do what managers in European countries with paid leave legislation have been doing for years . . . cross-train employees.
Encourage “productivity phases.” Dr. Krista Kurth states, “According to research, the human brain is hardwired to take a rest, or shift in attention, at least every 90 to 120 minutes. If we do not take this mental break, our brains will take it anyway. This is when we most often make errors. People who take productivity pauses return to the task at hand with renewed vigor and focus.”
Provide resources. Offer articles, books, brown-bag lunches and online seminars about stress and overwork, work-life balance and personal energy management. This will give employees the information they need to make better choices about balancing their energies across their work and life. Use the material in this article to begin designing your own seminar. Better yet, hire an expert to speak to your managers and employees or enroll them in appropriate training.
Look for ways to sneak in a little fun. For example, if you have a cafeteria, you can transform lunchtimes into concert times inexpensively by inviting employees with musical instruments and hopefully a modicum of talent to play and/or sing for their colleagues.
Consider providing employees training in relaxation methods, such as Yoga and meditation. These practices help strengthen the body and lower stress. Meditation, Van Horn points out is “the perfect vehicle to refresh physical and mental functioning and to enhance the emotional intelligence, which is a prerequisite for business building and developing entrepreneurial skills.”
In today’s world, managing work life balance can be tough if you don’t know what you’re doing. Work is such a large part of your life that it can seem easier to forgo the other areas such as recreation, spirituality and family, to name just a few.
But it’s important that you find enough time to enjoy all different aspects of your life, otherwise you can burn out. The first thing you need to do is write down your Intentions. These are things that you want to turn into reality for the next week. Attending your daughter’s recital, going to church or taking care of your tax return are all Intentions. So make sure you write your Intentions down in your diary for a certain day and allow time for them. Intentions don’t have to be tasks, either. They can be as simple as wanting to Be Kind. If you want to live your ideal life, first you have to plan it, and then live it! This is the key to managing work life balance. It’s important that you don’t put off until retirement something you’ve always wanted to do. Remember, dreams are goals without a deadline. So if you want to turn your dream into reality, then you need to give it a deadline.
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