Today I just wanted to write about work and some essential down time. I absolutely love my job, but technically it falls under the ‘maintenance and assurance’ sector for the telecommunication company and well, we all know that means our busiest sector and I feel like I spend all my time at work but this means it’s even more important for me to make some time for myself.
I work at least 51 hours a week, so obviously for me, I will never find balance in terms of hours spent, but that’s a common problem, so for me it’s more about how I’m feeling and what makes me happy. I’m so lucky that I enjoy what I do, not everyone has that luxury, but having some time to unwind is key to keeping myself sane.
Exercise is key, ok, I’ve not been doing much of that lately, but I’ve finally made it back. A skating has been my main source of exercise and a bit of meditation is really handy for reducing work related stress so if you’ve never tried it, give it a go!
Also making some ‘me time’ away from my phone and laptop is nice decision. So a night curled up with my blanket and a cup of hot chocolate, reading a book or magazine, while cuddling with my husband or my cat is also now much higher on my list of priorities. It’s something that’s so easy to do and if you only have 15 minutes spare in the evening, it’s something that you can easily fit in.
So forget about balance in terms of hours spent cause that’s impossible! but instead focus on what makes you happy and the best way to relax and unwind so that you can continue to be the best at your job while treating yourself to some quality R&R.
Other tips that you can try…..
MAKING THE 9-5 WORK FOR YOU
Or in my case the 7.30 am – 4.30 pm, but let’s not go there! If you’ve been reading this blog lately, you’ll know I’ve had a lot on my plate between work, skating, marriage and having a social life.
I’m a firm believer that if something is important to you then you will make time for it no matter what your working schedule is. I guess you have to prioritise and plan things in advance; oh isn’t adulthood so thrilling?! So how do you make 9-5 work for you? Here’s a few things that make me feel like I have more balance.
//DO NOT LIVE FOR THE WEEKEND//
This rule could be changed to does not live for your days off, but I’m trying to keep it simple here. I have found that living for the weekend actually makes the working week much harder to bear. If all you do is focusing on work during the week and then having the best time ever at the weekend then it is not really a healthy balance. 5 days of feeling a bit low and then 2 days of excitement. I am very lucky that I enjoy my job, but everyone has bad days or even weeks, so if you save all the fun for the weekend, then you have much longer to wait until you get to actually enjoy yourself, and it will make the week feel longer.
Try to plan something for half way through the week that you really enjoy. Meet a friend for dinner, grab a drink with your partner, go to the gym, or even put on a face mask, and watch your favourite movie. It doesn’t have to be anything extravagant, just make sure you put some time aside for you.
//LEAVE WORK AT WORK//
I’m quite lucky with this one, my work all stays at work and I don’t have access to our computer system from home, so when I walk out the door at 4.30 , that is it. I’m done for the day. I know that’s not so realistic for everyone though, and you may have to be on call or available at all times. I’m no expert on this one, but I’d guess the best way to deal with this is to switch off your work phone at any time that you are not expected to be on call. You have to step away and have a break, it will make you so much more productive when you are supposed to be on the job.
With my coaching I have to do a bit of work on my own schedule, and I think that’s the key word: schedule. Make one and stick to it. If you work from home or do freelance, get yourself organised so that you have set times for tasks and make sure you switch off when it’s time.
//HAVE A MOAN//
Generally, I like to try stay positive, but I actually think a good quick moan is key to keeping positive. If you’ve had a bad day, speak to a friend, family member or your partner, have a good rant. It’s ok! Let it all out, maybe someone will be able to offer some advice or you may just need them to listen to you for 10 minutes. Then, once you’re done move on. Don’t dwell on the bad things, get it all out, then find something fun to do!
//GET YOURSELF A HOBBY//
I have my blog, skating & editing video that I do just for me, no one else. These are things that I use to switch off and unwind while still feeling like I’m being productive; I absolutely hate to just sit around and do nothing, I feel like I get so much more out of my week if I keep busy.
So what about you?
What do you like to do to make that 9-5 work for you and allow you that all important work-life balance?
These are just the things that work for me, but everyone has their own idea of what works and as far as I’m concerned the only right answer is the one that makes you happy!