3 Habits For Better Work-Life Balance
When you leave the office each day, do you truly stop working? Most of us don’t. Between checking email on our phone; responding to questions on Slack, Hipchat, or another platform; and checking off “just one more task” before you go to sleep, it’s easy to feel “on” 24/7.
The problem with this lifestyle is that over time you actually become less productive. It might seem counter-intuitive, but the average person gets more done in eight hours of work time at the office than 10 hours spread throughout the day.
That’s because consistently working overtime leads to stress, burnout, and exhaustion.
To avoid pushing yourself too far, adopt these three habits. They’ll restore your work-life balance—so you can have your sanity and your productivity, too.
1. Turn off your email notifications
If you’re prone to constantly checking your work email on your phone, try turning off your email notifications.
For example, if you use Gmail, you’d go into your phone’s settings and turn off Gmail’s banner alerts.
This switch makes it much easier to put work out of your mind. Every time you read a notification that you have a new message, you remember your current queue of projects, unfinished activities, and roadblocks—plus, you’re tempted to read the email.
You might even consider deleting your email app entirely. However, that can make it hard to check your email while you’re traveling for work or there’s an emergency.
2. Commit to leaving at a certain time
Some professionals have a tough time leaving the office at a reasonable hour. Although it might feel like you’re getting more done by burning the midnight oil, there are diminishing returns.
We suggest setting a firm deadline for yourself. For example, someone who usually gets in around 8 a.m. might commit to going home at 6 p.m. To hold yourself to this, schedule something in the evening. You might ask a friend to meet you for dinner, book a spot in an exercise class, or go to a movie.
It’s also a good idea to set a reminder for yourself. Do so manually with a Post-It note on your desk or automatically with a phone alarm or calendar alert.
3. Give yourself permission to let go
It’s common to feel guilty when you don’t work excessive amounts. Unfortunately, society glorifies throwing yourself completely into your job and prioritizing it above everything else.
But there’s no need to feel like you’ve let yourself, your team, or your employer down by striking a healthy balance between your professional and personal lives. Whenever you feel the guilt creeping in, tell yourself something along the lines of, “I deserve work-life balance. It makes me happier, healthier, and more successful. Not only am I helping myself, but I’m also setting a good model for those around me.”
You can either recite this out loud or in your mind. Alternatively, write it down and reread it when you need to.
These three simple changes can make a huge impact on your ability to juggle work and life. Implement them now to start reaping the benefits.
About Signature Consultants, LLC
Headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Signature Consultants was established in 1997 with a singular focus: to provide clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. For the seventh consecutive year, Signature was voted as one of the “Best Staffing Firms to Work For” and is now the 14th largest IT staffing firm in the United States (source: Staffing Industry Analysts). With 26 locations throughout North America, Signature annually deploys thousands of consultants to support, run, and manage their clients’ technology needs. Signature offers IT staffing, consulting, managed solutions, and direct placement services. For more information on the company, please visit www.sigconsult.com.