Introduction to 5 Work-Life Balance Routines to Boost Success and Lower Stress
Boost your success and lower your stress with the 5 work-life balance routines described in this article. At present, we live in quite stressful times. You may be stressing about the economy and the pressure it is putting on you. Or you feel the stress of political unrest, illness complications, war, or work concerns.
It may be disheartened to go through your days trying to put a smile on your face and inspire yourself or motivate others when you are feeling a bit down yourself. One of the reasons you may feel stressed is that you are maxing out your days with work and other exhausting activities.
This leaves truly little down time to relax, recharge, and renew your physical and emotional energy. You cannot go 100 mph for all your waking hours. Another drain that may be causing you stress is that you are focusing too much on your work or on your personal life. That usually results in one of the two being neglected to the point where it negatively impacts your satisfaction, your work or home relationships, your income, and more.
Increase Success and Relieve Tension
If you want to increase your success, while still having the ability to nurture your relationships and other aspects of your home life, you need to figure out a process . And you need a schedule that will allow you to succeed in all areas, not just one or the other.
Below, we go into detail on 5 work-life balance routines that will help you kick stress to the curb, or at the very least minimize it. We describe five different methods of achieving work-life balance for you to choose from and consider using. If you choose one or more of the 5 work-life balance routines, you will naturally see an upswing in your work attitude and performance and your personal satisfaction will improve.
You may want to try each of these methods to see what works best for you. Tweak them if you find something slightly different that you think will benefit you the most.
5 Work-Life Balance Routines
Here are the 5 work-life balance routines or methods to boost your success and lower your stress. And good luck with them:
1. Balance Your Work and Home Life with an Equal Split
The first of 5 work-life balance routines that will help you increase work success and alleviate stress is to use an equal distribution of your time. Everyone has unique needs when it comes to the number of hours that they sleep, but usually, it is anywhere from 7 to 10 hours per night.
Using the maximum number of sleep hours leaves approximately 14 hours left in your day to split evenly between your personal life and your career. Seven hours should be enough to deliver on both your personal satisfaction as well as your job goals.
It is almost like having a full day at work, and more than most people have to contribute to a home life. Especially if others have to spend a lot of time commuting to and from the office.
Imagine what you can do when you strategically plan seven hours for each of those components of your life! Start by planning out what you need to do for your career with those seven hours.
Whether you are an office or industrial worker or an entrepreneur, you have a variety of tasks that must be tended to. Those will include working on projects, managing subordinates, completing assignments, team meeting online or in-person, administrative activities like emails, blog posts, and filling out paperwork.
You may also need to do some networking, conduct some research, analyze statistics and data, write reports and engage in the creative process for all the various needs you will have to handle throughout your day.
You can organize your days so that you do a little bit in each of these areas every day of the week, Monday through Friday. Or, if you prefer, you can spend one day using most of your hours for research and analysis, and another day spending time on marketing, a third day team building and assignment follow-up, and yet a fourth day on personnel issues, and so forth.
Because you have a full seven hours daily to work on your job, it will be beneficial if you will add-in some frequent breaks throughout your day so that you do not become drained from the heavy focus on work for that long stretch of time.
“Take frequent breaks and strive to constantly eliminate instead of organize.” Tim Ferriss’ #1 bestselling book, The 4-Hour Workweek.
Time for your Personal Life
After you map out how you want to spend your seven work hours each day, do the same thing for your personal life. For example, you might want to carve out time to spend at the gym taking care of your physical fitness needs or spend time having family dinners every day.
Your personal life schedule for those seven hours will include things that are almost administrative and routine like packing lunches for the kids and taking them to school, picking up dlothes from the dry cleaners or food shopping.
It can also include things you may not have gotten to enjoy lately, like your favorite hobby or pastime, visiting with friends for lunch – or even spending time doing absolutely nothing. This can be a wonderful way to spend a bit of time alone to decompress.
Also keep in mind that you can split those seven hours up however you like. For example, instead of waking up and spending seven straight hours on work, you might spend a couple of hours with your family or engaging in self-care, followed by several hours of work, more hours with your family or taking care of personal needs such as appointments, cooking, cleaning, and laundry. Then get back to working.
Initially, you may need to keep track of the amount of time you are spending in each area of your life. That way, you know you are not favoring one aspect of your life over another.
If you do not track at first, you may accidentally or unknowingly spend too much time either avoiding work or focusing too much on it. It is easy to gloss over the day and assume you have done enough, but the tracking might be eye opening to you and point out areas that you have been neglecting.
2. Achieve More and Stress Less by Prioritizing
An equal split may not necessarily be the best fit for everyone. You may have various pressing concerns in your personal or business life that need you to attend to them more than any other area.
In this case, creating your routine so that you are operating from a prioritized task list every day can help you wipe away the stress and focus on what you can achieve more easily.
In both your personal and career worlds, you will have certain things that are at the forefront of your mind. Some of these will be a frequent occurrence, and others popping up from time to time.
For example, you may have ongoing financial stress that is a daily concern. When it comes to your personal life, you might be stressed making sure your kids have everything they need for going back to school.
Or, you or a family member may be experiencing some sort of health issue that needs your immediate focus and attention until it is resolved or until you are able to better manage it. Whenever you have things in your life that need to be a high priority, it helps to knock those out at the beginning of your day so that you know you have made progress in that area consistently.
As the day unfolds, and your priorities have been marked off, you will be able to then turn your attention to less pressing matters that still need to be accomplished, but are not as imperative.
Work and Personal Priorities
If you choose to use or try this one of the 5 work-life balance routines, you must make two separate lists for the priorities in your personal and work lives. Then, you can merge the list into one. Alternate between your personal and career priorities or put one over the other. If you alternate between your personal and career priorities you take care of both areas. Or if you put one over the other, you could make sure your kids’ back-to-school tasks or your family health matters are handled before you then move onto your work or business activities.
Or you can do this in reverse. Business priorities first, then personal matters. The reason this routine works so well is because we all have things going on in our lives that bring about a constant source of worry.
By getting those out-of-the-way early in your day, you will be able to avoid the constant nagging influx of anxiety all day until you are finally able to address it. It will make the remainder of your day more pleasant, and you will have been able to put the bulk of your energy toward the things that require more of you physically or emotionally or creatively.
“Eliminate Distractions, Multiply Your Time And Reach Your Goals.”— Lifehack The Full Life Planner
3. Enjoy a Balanced Life with a Daily, Weekly, Monthly and Annual Routine
When you want to be highly organized and you have multiple repetitive tasks that must be carefully planned out over a period of time, you may want to use a schedule that is based on larger blocks than just a few hours a day.
You can develop work-life balance routines that are based on schedules you create for your daily, weekly, monthly, and annual projects.
You have heard of people performing annual spring cleaning . In fact, you may perform spring cleaning yourself – where every spring you conduct a thorough, deep clean of your house or workspace and get rid of a lot of clutter and belongings that you know you no longer need.
This is the kind of scheduling and planned activity that you can do using this one of 5 work-life balance routines. This can apply to all aspects of your life, from your relationships and earning needs to your parenting and work.
You can use all four of these schedules to create a master plan of how you want your year to unfold. You want to have a list of all the activities and projects that are repetitive in your personal and career life, but also allow for unexpected events, projects, and other things to occur.
The process of planning this is a little more complex because you must sit down and think about all the daily things you want and need to accomplish first. Then add in the weekly, monthly, and annual tasks for your career and home life.
So, a daily task for your personal life might be engaging in self-care or doing the dishes, a weekly one might be checking in on your garden to add compost to it or checking the kids’ grades to see how they did that week.
For your monthly personal tasks, you might make a visit to a big box store like Costco to stock up on things. An annual task could be to go to your yearly dental and physical check-up appointments.
In your business life, the daily tasks could be to publish a current blog post or answer emails that have come in. Weekly tasks might be to queue up a week’s worth of promotional letters or a weekly team project status meeting.
Monthly business tasks for your routine could be checking your analytics or creating a plan for a monthly trade show. An annual (or quarterly) responsibility for your routine might be, for example, to take care of your taxes.
You can make separate lists for these time periods and have a specific day or date for the weekly, monthly, and annual tasks. For example, Wednesdays could be when you take care of the weekly tasks, the first Monday of each month for the monthly ones, and either the end of the year or beginning when you manage the annual tasks.
It needs to be on your calendar, so if you are not used to abiding by a long-term project calendar, now is the time to find one that suits your needs (either a physical or digital one that you can download and print out).
“Doing the same things day after day is fine, as long as your habits push you to be your most productive and healthy self.” – INC. Daily Habits Practiced by Successful Entrepreneurs and Executives
4. Choose Between a Relaxed Versus Stringent Work-Life Balance Routine
There are two types of people in this world – those who like to abide by a detailed, unwavering schedule – and those who operate better having flexibility. If you can be trusted to do what needs to be done, then there is nothing wrong with being flexible.
Require Stringent Schedules
But if you are the type who uses excuses like a crutch and who cannot seem to accomplish your goals in either area of your life, then you may need to get tough on yourself. A stringent schedule where you have a set time for your alarm to go off, a specific time you will work on a certain project (and for how long). Built-in routines that cannot waver can be beneficial to those who need more structure.
Desire a Relaxed Schedule
A relaxed routine does not mean you are flying by the seat of your pants without any type of blueprint. It simply means you understand that outside factors can sometimes disrupt the well-laid plans you had formulated for the day.
For example, you might have a schedule and deadline for a product launch, only to experience a sick child who needs to go to the doctor. Suddenly you must jettison your entire schedule and you feel behind.
People who do not like the strict timeframes in their routine, and who feel more at home with flexibility can have a schedule that accommodates whatever the day holds – whether it is about someone else or even your own needs.
With many workers, adhering to an unchangeable routine can serve as a reassurance because they do not need to feel guilt since they generally not getting off track. They know they might dawdle and squander their time if they have a relaxed schedule and freedom to move their day around without consequences.
While you may still need to take your child to the doctor, you will know that you must still complete your project by the end of the day. That may mean you eliminate free time and focus more on your task list, if necessary to complete that day’s assignments on schedule.
5. Delegating May Work to Ease Your Burdens
Frequently, managers or employees do not necessarily think about this when they are focusing on work-life balance, but delegation can bring a world of relief when you are feeling overwhelmed and worry you are not meeting the needs of your personal or business life.
Some people find that delegation is hard to do. But that may be because they don’t know how to go about it the right way.
Preliminary Steps in Successful Delegation
First, create a list of the tasks you need or want to get accomplish each day or on whatever timeframe you choose to set up.
Prioritize them and make a note of which ones are overly time-consuming, which ones you dread because you find them tedious, and which ones you simply do not perform well. These are the ones you will want to consider delegating to others. This could be to subordinates, other co-workers, outsourcing or hiring temporary contract help.
When hiring someone else or outsourcing a project or task to them, you must make sure you build in a cushion of time for delivery or completion in case something happens in their effort that causes them to be late.
Hire people who will do the work right the first time. Pay a bit more for higher quality. When you receive the deliverables you will gratified they are what you ordered and were on time.
Delegate tasks and projects like data input, typing, customer service, lead generation, bookkeeping, IT, sales, or social media. Also outsource graphic design for your business for things like sales material or internal communications, and more.
You can even build a routine where you free up a fair amount of your own personal schedule. How? Delegate administrative work to an assistant who can manage tasks that do not require you to do them.
When delegating, do not decide based on price or availability alone. There is more to making this work than those two elements, although they are also important. Look at the outsource or temp hire’s person’s profile and portfolio and read the their prior customers’ feedback.
You can find people to outsource to by networking with other workers or entrepreneurs. You can also find good people to outsource so that you have more time to devote to work-life balance by using sites like UpWork and Fiverr, to name a couple.
Many studies indicate that working too-long hours can hurt the employee or leader as well as their organization. Yet often workers still have difficulty overcoming their assumptions — and their deeply-entrenched old habits of long work hours.
What is true work-life balance?
Attaining true work-life balance is about managing your time properly and knowing how to prioritize your personal and work tasks so that you go to bed each night content with your daily accomplishments.
Try the different routines listed above and see what works best for you. You might even combine two or more to help you make progress in achieving both your work and home life goals.
“Research has definitively shown that overwork is not good for employees or their companies. “– HBR. Work-Life Balance Is a Cycle, Not an Achievement
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