One of my biggest challenges ‘ever-ever’ has been balancing my work with personal. Prioritizing between work and  personal life can be a huge challenge. In fact studies show that a poor work-life balance can result in unhealthy levels of stress, unhappiness, and even reduced productivity. A while back I was fortunate enough to be trained by a Sally McGhee instructor on Take Back Your Life. Some of the principles I follow religiously. I will write a future episode on my take from this training. However, I have considered the following:

Priorities

I try to figure out what I want my priorities to be, not what I think they should be. So you can ask yourself, “If I could only focus on one thing in my life, what would it be? That answer is your top priority. What would you focus on second? Third? Fourth? Fifth? You’ve now identified your top five priorities.

 

An emergency would most likely have to come up before you’d reschedule an important work meeting. Give your own time the same respect. Once you’ve put private time on your schedule, protect it, unless there’s an emergency.

Don’t multitask!

Gone were the days when I used to feel bad about not being able to multitask! Multitask is bad. Bad for focus, bad for concentration, bad for productivity, bad to the health so very bad. What it should be instead is ability to handle multiple tasks; not at the same time though.

 

Respect your private time and make others respect it too.

An emergency would most likely have to come up before you’d reschedule an important work meeting. Give your own time the same respect. Once you’ve put private time on your schedule, protect it, unless there’s an emergency.

Take a vacation

At the very least, take two weeks off from work per year. You don’t need to go far and you don’t need to spend lots of money, but you do need to recharge your batteries in order to be the most productive, creative, and happy person possible. Turn off your cell phone and computer, and enjoy.

Hire a personal coach

A personal coach can assess your current work-life balance, and can tell you what you can do to achieve optimal balance.

Work out more

It may feel counterintuitive to add another activity to your life, but exercise relieves stress, clears your mind, and ultimately makes you more productive. Don’t skip it. You’ll find that you greet work, family, and personal commitments with renewed vigor.

I am a witness that balance is beautiful. Sometimes I fall into water. Sometimes I ‘drop the ball’ but achieving balance in both your work and personal lives allows me to perform optimally in both areas.