Our Take on Work-Life Balance
We’ve all probably heard the phrase “work-life balance” more times than we can count. Though it’s become a cliché, the sentiment behind it is relevant. Here’s what our team thinks of creating a healthy balance between your work and personal life.
The ideal work-life balance is going to look different for everyone – not everyone wants a 50/50 balance. Here are two questions to ask yourself to find the balance that works for you:
- What is a healthy amount of time you want to devote to your family, friends, sleep, hobbies and activities, travel, etc.?
- Recognize you may not be able to do those things daily. Zoom out and think more wholistically – what is the balance of your week or month instead?
If you’re in a relationship, make sure you talk things over with your spouse or significant-other and create a healthy balance together. You can’t be in balance alone if you live your life with someone else. The point is that it’s not just your work and life that matter when you live your life with another – be sure you’re on the same page on how your time is being spent.
Often when thinking about work-life balance, people think narrowly about balancing their work and personal life obligations. It’s important to not lose yourself in the equation — to make time for the things that make you feel most like you. Be intentional with your self-care time. Whether that’s a date night with your partner, a manicure, a call with a friend or going to your favorite coffee shop. Reconnect with yourself so you can show up to your obligations as the best version of yourself.
It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day. Be sure you’re setting aside thinking time, at least once a year, where you can look out over an extended period. Use that time to paint the picture of where you want to be and keep that close to you. It will energize you when things get tough and help you allocate your time accordingly and create the balance you want to fulfill your goals.
When I was playing football in college, my academic advisor made me fill out an excel sheet every week that was titled our “168” (the number of hours in a week). We would fill these out every Sunday at our academic check-ins and it not only helped me plan out my week, but it saved me a lot of mental energy because I never had to think about what I had to do next. I’ve carried this practice into my role at MPI – by having all my activities planned on my calendar, I can balance my work and personal and not have to waste any energy trying to figure out what I must do next.
Planning your schedule ahead of time helps conserve energy. I think of it as being like laying out your work clothes the night before and not worrying about what to wear when you wake up in the morning.
Give yourself grace and lean on your support system. Every season is different and requires a different balance between your work and personal life. Be open to change and dig deep to know when to lean into each. Most importantly, communicate with the people in your life so they know where your focus is and where they may potentially be able to support you.
What are your tips for creating work-life balance? Tell us in the comments below!