Are you a workaholic? If you find yourself consistently working long hours, even during personal time, you are most likely obsessed with work. Read this article to learn how to improve your work-life balance by developing these habits at work:
Make a Daily To-do List
It’s usual to get overwhelmed with work, especially when you have many assignments on your plate. The more tasks you try to complete at once, the more loose ends you’ll have to tidy up later on. Once you get too busy, you will end up losing the balance between work and life.
Therefore, one of the main goals of having a to-do list is to organise your tasks systematically, making it more manageable. Having all your tasks laid out makes it easier to prioritise them, plan your workday ahead, and track progress in real-time. You’ll also have a sense of accomplishment that will enable you to approach your tasks with a positive attitude rather than blindly diving into them.
The first thing that you should do when finding yourself overwhelmed with work is to reach out to your leader. Don’t try to take on more projects than you can handle (besides your main duties) and even if you do, don’t be afraid to seek help from other colleagues or your boss. However, be mindful that your team members may already have a tight schedule to follow, so only raise your concern to your supervisor instead of delegating your tasks on your own.
Differentiate Being Hard-working vs Workaholic
Most people tend to confuse working hard with working overtime. In comparison, a workaholic is an individual who puts career in the centre of his or her life and everything else comes second. Whereas a hard worker focuses more on productivity while making sure that all the tasks are accomplished with the highest quality. They are willing to work extra hours to fulfil their job requirements, but they do not to push themselves unreasonably to the point of being burned out. Working hours and office culture vary among different organisations, hence more job seekers are prioritising work-life balance as their criteria for a great place to work. As an experienced professional it is important that you set strict boundaries between work and personal life. Remember, work smarter, not harder!
Related: How to Manage Workplace Stress
Find a Hobby
Do you have a hobby that does not relate to your professional life? Think about your personal interests and what would you like to do to stay mentally and physically healthy. Whether it’s playing sport, reading books, or even travelling, do make time to pursue whatever brings joy to your life outside of the office cubicle. On a side note, physical activity can be an excellent stress reliever as it keeps you stay fit and more energetic for more challenges at work. Spending more time with your loved ones, doing more charitable works, or simply having some downtime can be the enabler of a more fulfilling career too.
Set boundaries Between Work and Home
It’s much easier to cross the line between work and personal time than you may think. Work-life boundaries usually consist of aspects like no personal phone calls during work hours, no work emails at home, or having lunch outside of the office. When it comes to work-life balance, there are no set rules to follow, you will have to set the boundaries on your own.
For example, disconnect work email from your phone or set up a schedule for social activities on top of the regular 8-hour workday. You may find it hard to stick to a no-work after work schedule at first, but trust us when we say it’ll change your life for the better. Likewise, make sure that you fully utilise your working hours in order to stay on track and prevent having extra works to bring home. If you are an employee on a remote basis or a freelancer, chances are you will need to manage a fluctuating workload with flexible working hours. In which case, it’s best to prioritise based on the project timeline and do not procrastinate.
We are easily pushed off balance by interruptions at work no matter how much we avoid them. It’s close to impossible to stay completely undisturbed in the office environment, even more so for open spaces.
Once any form of distraction interferes with your focus, it will affect your productivity one way or another. With less time to finish work, it’s natural to work overtime and eventually, it’ll become a habit that makes you a workaholic. Productivity goes hand in hand with work-life balance.
There are a few things that you can do to stay attentive to work. For instance, discipline yourself to put your smartphone away during work, from WhatsApp-ing to browsing Facebook. You can also inform your colleagues not to disrupt you for unnecessary matters if you are running for deadlines.