Ever felt like there are simply not enough hours in a day? Although many of us strive to lead a full life, we’ve all experienced times when it seems our plates are just a little too full. Trying to juggle your career, home life, social life and personal interests can sometimes feel like a tremendous challenge – and finding time to rest in between can seem impossible!
With today’s increasingly fast-paced business environment and nature of the UK’s competitive career arena, employees are being constantly forced to push the boundaries on their performance. This pressure to work longer and harder often results in people neglecting other key areas of their lives such as their families and well-being.
Work life balance can be described as the healthy divide of your time between your career and personal life that results in both achievement and enjoyment. The key to work life balance is to spend the right amount of time, energy and focus on each area that will allow you to reach your career goals while leading a fulfilling life outside of work at the same time.
The Importance of Work Life Balance
In an article published by the UK Mental Health Foundation, it was noted that “the pressure of an increasingly demanding work culture in the UK is perhaps the biggest and most pressing challenge to the mental health of the general population”.
Besides work life balance being essential for your mental wellbeing, it’s also crucial for your physical health. Without sufficient rest, your body won’t be able to function as it should.
Another important reason for a healthy balance between work and life is fulfilment. If you’re overworking to achieve your career goals, chances are you won’t feel very satisfied with your achievements at the end of the day. Balance will help you from feeling uninspired and unmotivated at work.
Improving Your Work Life Balance
If you’re worried that you don’t currently have a positive balance between your career and personal life, perhaps it’s time to try implementing a few of these tips for an improved work life balance.
Set attainable career goals
Setting goals for yourself that are reasonable will help you plan your work and achievements in a fair and realistic way. Having these goals will give you some perspective on your career - helping you work towards what is important at a logical and feasible pace. When you’re working towards something specific, managing your time and energy becomes easier. You’ll be able to prioritise more effectively too - you want to make sure you’re putting in the hard work where it’s going to pay off.
Align your career with your authentic self
Take time to self-reflect. Is your career truly aligned with your inner drive and passions? Being authentic at work and pursuing a line of work that is optimally aligned with your true self will go a long way towards a healthy work life balance. If you’ve followed a career path that you don’t necessarily enjoy - perhaps for money, status, family pressure (or any other reason), you may find yourself overworked and stressed while trying to achieve goals that aren’t in line with your personality.
Pursue your personal interests
While most of this article has focused on the ‘work’ aspect of work life balance, your efforts in your personal life are just as important. When you aren’t at work, spend time pursuing your personal interests and doing things that you enjoy. These activities will leave you feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the challenges ahead of you with a positive mindset. Leading a full life doing things that you enjoy will contribute largely to replenishing the energy you spend at work.
Get help finding balance
There are many other actionable steps you can take in improving your work life balance. If you’re looking to develop your career, you’ll need to make sure that you maintain this healthy balance as you progress – it will contribute to your performance and success at the end of the day too.
Our career consultants have over 20 years’ experience in helping professionals advance in their careers with a healthy work life balance. If you’d like to chat to us about your current career path and working habits, get in touch for a free phone consultation.