24 June, 2015

5 tips for better work life fit

Work life fit is a myth for many, because it never works for them.

Few people excel at work and also spend meaningful time at home with family. They don't take office stress to home and don't take personal problems to office. I wonder, are they saints? :-)

Really, don't you think, this boundary creation between work and home is a greatest thing to achieve? I feel, every employee aims to achieve this, but fail miserably.

When we grow in our career, climb the corporate ladder, creation of this boundary becomes very tough. That too, in this modern world where our technology keeps us connected to office 24 hours a day. We have work from home options and also laptops and PDAs to access office emails from home which will help in working at odd hours and support the organization. At one point of time, the leadership expects us to not only check mails at night 12, but also be responsible to reply and work if needed. This changes the work culture and depresses/ demotivate employees.

Came across this article in https://www.rewardme.in/family site, which is very informative on work life balance. Do read it and let me know if it helps.

Now, my tips on managing better work life fit (some of the highlights from above link).

1. Manage time well : This is the toughest of all. But, if i say it in a easy way, more productive work is equal to better time management. We have many distractions in office - access to social media sites, gossip about colleagues,being late to office etc., All these reduce our productive work, thus demanding us to stretch at office to complete work. One or two coffee breaks and half an hour lunch break doesn't do any harm, they will allow us to refresh and work better. But, disconnecting from social media sites enables us to concentrate and complete work quick. If we can plan to complete our work only at office, it reduces stress. Maintaining office timings strictly is important.

2. Set priorities: Priorities change. Sometimes, office work becomes important if there is an important release and personal problems dominate when someone at home is sick and need our attention. Be flexible. There is nothing wrong in taking a day off or working from home when needed. In the same way, there is nothing wrong in working one weekend when it's essential for project. Both are important, right? There shouldn't be any guilty feeling for choosing one over the other, because it's our personal choice.

3. Set 'Me' time: Office, home, family everything is fine. But, do we concentrate on ourselves any time? What do you like to do? Reading, swimming, playing cricket, travelling.. there are many interests for each individual. If we forget our interests in this rat race of earning money and running family, our individuality itself will change. Every individual is unique because of his talents or hobbies. We shouldn't lose this unique identity of ourselves. It is not that easy, but find a way to do something which you like at least once a week or daily one hour.

4. Plan ahead: Be it a vacation or attending a family function or taking kids to park or watching a movie with spouse or shopping or any thing.. Plan ahead. We will know the list of firm holidays every year in January itself right? Is it very difficult to mark long weekends where you can take a leave on Monday or Friday or someday near holidays and plan for a vacation? Even at office, if we know important milestone release dates, note them to plan leaves on some other days. Many loose their leaves and don't use them. Few will be carry forwarded and few will be en cashed and others will be lost. Even though we should keep some leaves for sickness or emergency cases, using all leaves is a good practice.

5. Disconnect : When you are at home, disconnect laptop. It is as simple as it is. Instead of giving children a tab to play games, take them to a park/ make them do cycling, take them to swimming, tag along with them and spend time. Read bed time stories and make them do some creative activities. This way, we spend more time with family and be disconnected to office mails. Else, it becomes a habit to open laptop unnecessarily and thus involve in work from home in out of office hours.

There is no perfect work life balance. There are only priorities, which will change. So, something that works for one person might not fit for others. It is our individual choice and convenience. What say?

Until next time,

I am participating in the ‘Ready For Rewards’ activity for Rewardme in association with BlogAdda.

Image courtesy: https://www.flickr.com/photos/richardstep/

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