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Keep Your Life Without Losing Your Job
Monday, April 09, 2012

When it comes to having a social life, or any kind of life outside of work, people often feel that it's a sacrifice they have to make in order to accomodate their careers.

That doesn't have to be the case. There's no rule that says it has to be one or the other. People who work hard should at least be allowed to have a part of their lives dictated by choice.

This balance can be understandably hard to achieve, however, due to the fact that many businesses are choosing to cut back employment and reallocate the workload to the employees still on board.

There are solutions to maintaining a healthy balance between steady productivity and leisure activities. All it takes is a few simple lifestyle changes and by incorporating them into your daily routine, making time for work and play no longer has to be a struggle.

Set An Internal Schedule
You probably already have your body clock set to your work schedule with every minute accounted for. If that's the case, you need to start shifting things around during your day or the week where you can fit in the things you want to do. You also want to apply this method for work. Set out certain times or hours that you are most revved up and arrange your workload accordingly. The least challenging work can be set aside for other times in the day when energy runs lower.

Takes Breaks Only When Needed
If you're having a hard time focusing and find yourself constantly taking frequent breaks, this is going to slow you down. This may contribute to that overwhelming feeling you have toward work. The effects of too many breaks and not enough work getting done when it should be starts to spill over into other areas of your life thus making it harder to find time for the fun stuff. Instead of giving in to your lack of concentration, fight it at every moment it comes upon you. Make that a habit and the intensified productivity will feel all the more rewarding come 5 o'clock.

Separate But Balanced
A good way to make sure you do make the most of your working hours is to restrict yourself to doing it only when you're there. If you have to take work home with you that cuts into your own time and isn't a good way of managing time efficiently. Leave work where it is both physically and mentally. Even at the dinner table, try to keep the conversation off work-related topics. Remember that the time you get to spend at home are your opportunities for valuable bonding or unwinding.

Work Ends On the Weekends
Unless absolutely pertinent, leave work for the weekdays. If you have work to do on the weekends, set out a specific time to do it when it will not interfere with other activities. If it's a lot, spread it out during the two days to relieve some of the pressure of getting it all done at once. Weekends are only two days while you have five during the workweek. Whatever you can't get to during your time off can always be dealt with when you're at the office. Give yourself a chance to refresh and reboot so that you can tackle the workweek with a clear head. The less stress you feel toward getting work done the easier you make it on yourself to accomplish your tasks.

Vacations Are Given to Be Taken
Taking a few weeks out of the 52 there are in a year is not going to cause your company to have a meltdown. You've earned your vacation and by all means you should take it. It's best to take them in gaps as it makes more sense financially. A good chunk of time away from work may help get you ready and looking forward to your return to work. Vacations don't feel like it when you take time off only to stay at home with your mind still on work matters. Recharge yourself and go back to work with full force.

Personal time is just important as the time you devote to work. Creating an even balance between the two makes you a better employee because you're able to manage your time well. This is hard for many people as it seems like there is never enough hours in the day to do everything that life demands. All it really takes is good prioritization. With your time spent wisely where it should be, you'll get to enjoy the best of all worlds.