Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Can We Achieve a Work/Life Balance?

The concept of work/life balance seems to continuously come up as an issue for many. In looking at this term the work part is obvious; this is our form of employment and means of earning income. The life part can be seen as not only one’s ability to build and maintain personal relationships, but also one’s ability to take the time for themselves. I located a quiz on work/life balance provided by the Canadian Mental Health Association which encompasses all of these areas to an extent. While this is not the be all and end all, it provides an interesting perspective on where someone may fall, even when there appears to be a good balance - Work/LifeBalance Quiz!
Now that we have completed the quiz and are completely in balance *cough*, I have found some recommendations on how to work on this balancing act.
  1. If you’re someone who finds it difficult and like you’ve run out of time at the end of each week for all those extra things you wanted to do, try building out your schedule in advance (Uscher, J.). I don’t know about you, but when I do not have my days scheduled I can easily waste them away. Although it is good to get these relaxing, not doing anything days in, for some of us taking the extra step of making a plan is all we need for the extra push.
  2. Eliminate the things that suck away our energy (Uscher, J.). It may be someone at work who spends all their time complaining and trying to gossip, a friend you find it very difficult to be around, or even social media. We all have things that we engage in that we ourselves even know we should stop. Whether it’s because they take time or take away our energy, it’s good to check in on these things to see if changes are possible or needed.
  3. As was also stated in my emotional resilience post, exercise is important! Yes, I know this is something that also takes time but it also increases your energy levels overall as well as your ability to concentrate (Uscher, J.). As an example, when I am struggling to focus on my weekly reading for school, I will get up and move around – ideally I would be exercising each time, but if you do need to get back to the work quickly a short walk around the block, or even getting up from your work station and walking around the house can help.
As was stated in my last post, it’s not about making huge life altering changes, but making minor adjustments that help you feel better overall. If I compare a week of no exercise to a week when I have exercised a number of times I feel far better. The same goes for engaging in an activity that I enjoy or seeing my family. I have great difficulty finding balance these days, but I have tried to have a schedule ahead of time of all the things I need to do (and want to do!), try to move more, and have taken a break from some of the things that suck the energy out of me. All of these strategies have helped me greatly in keeping my mental health in check.

What are some strategies you have tried and have worked for you? Please share below so everyone can take advantage!

Thank you for reading, and please take a minute to complete my short 3 question survey -

Jennifer Lynn

WebMD (Uscher, J.) -

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