Are you good at balancing life and work? Do you constantly feel you are in a hamsters wheel, or have you got it just right?
In today’s society many women feel totally overwhelmed by the demands made on them. Work and family balance can seem like a constant battle.
So what is your definition of work life balance? Working out your priorities and deciding what really matters is the most important thing. Sometimes simple changes are all that is required.
1. Family. My daughter, now an adult, still fondly recalls the times we spent baking cakes in our kitchen. I still remember the pride in her face as she burst through the kitchen door to show her daddy the finished cakes with the pink icing.
I doubt very much if she has any memory at all of how often the oven was cleaned. The oven would have to be cleaned at some point but this task held no importance in her eyes.
Family time should be guarded carefully. Children in particular need to know the time you spend with them is not grudged or rushed with one eye constantly on the clock.
2. Work. There is no doubt some people have little control over their working life and many are wary of “rocking the boat” for fear they may lose their jobs. A good employer will respect work and family balance and it is worth remembering they have a responsibility for your wellbeing.
If you are working very long hours and feel stressed or unhappy, you should talk to your employer. It may be possible to reduce or change your hours. Flexible working is the best way to endorse work life balancing.
Working for yourself from home can be the answer for some as it offers the flexibility to work round family commitments and allows you to gain some control over how much work you do and when.
3. Being Organised. Knowing your priorities and planning your time will help you stay in control. Recognising that one person can not do everything is key. If you have a partner it is time to divide up the workload. Sitting down and discussing things such as who does the household chores, takes kids to activities etc. all make a difference.
Work and family balance is about allowing time for yourself. Being organised will allow you some guilt free time out. It is very important to look after yourself and find ways to relax. For some it is having a night out with your partner or friends. For others swimming or simply relaxing in a bath makes them feel good.
In the end the benefits of balancing life and work are immeasurable. For the employer there is an increased commitment, productivity, retention, higher morale and less absenteeism. For the individual the feeling of being in control and valued, better relationships both in and out of work and a happier healthier life.
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