In a perfect world, we would spend eight hours a day (and only eight hours a day) five days a week at work. The remaining hours of our day could then be strictly dedicated to our personal lives. But in all reality, is this actually how it works? Is anyone really one hundred percent committed to their jobs on their clock? We’ve all been guilty of thinking about our children, talking to a spouse via text message, or browsing the internet planning events for our families at one time or another.
Similarly, how many of us are really off the clock when we’re home? My guess is none. Do you really go home and stay away from your email? With notifications direct to your phone, it’s impossible to remain completely unconnected. With the way technology is progressing, it’s time to redefine work/life balance.
Here are some steps you can take to approach this new definition.
1. Realize That Work-Life Balance Does Not Exist
Say it with me: there is no such thing as work-life balance. There will always be pressing issues at work and in your personal life. It’s impossible to completely drop your personal life the second you walk into work, and it’s also impossible to forget about work the second you walk into your home.
With that being said, when you are at work, be at work. When you’re with your family, be with your family. It’s ok to address an emergency, but you need to learn to stay in the moment. Telling yourself “I won’t ever check an email after leaving the office,” is an unachievable standard and contributes to the myth of a work-life balance (while making you feel like you’re failing at it).
2. Create A Work Space that is Strictly for Work
Perhaps work-life balance seems impossible because working from home is now a thing. By no means are we complaining. Who doesn’t love not leaving their house if they don’t need to? But when we work from a space that we also use for relaxation, our brains become confused. If you work from your bed often, for example, you might find yourself struggling to go to sleep. That’s because our brain now associates our bed as a “working space.” So when you lay your head down in bed, your body is questioning what you are doing.
Create a workspace that is perfect for you. One of the greatest benefits of working from home is being comfortable. You can still work from home and be productive in an office setting. With the right furniture, your workspace can keep you motivated and engaged.
3. Enhance Productivity
Everyone has a productive hour or time of day. For instance, some people are morning people, and some are night people. If you can, mix your tasks up so that you are working hard during your “productive” hour. For example, if you know you have a conference call that will last all afternoon, focus on the work that requires most of your attention early in the morning so that you can get it done by deadline. Take advantage of the hours that you can be productive.
The truth is, work-life balance really doesn’t exist, but for our health, we need to keep the two as separate as possible. It’s time we recognize that the two will never be truly divided, but we can do our best.
At Iron Age Office, we want to help you create a workspace that you enjoy. So whether you’re in the office hammering out tasks, or in your home office trying to stay productive, you can still be comfortable and concentrated. Have you been dreaming about that perfect workspace? We’re here to help. Contact Iron Age office to bring that space to life.