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Proactivity versus reactivity
The importance of defining your path in life
The concept of work life balance basically views work and life as 2 separate parts of our life that need to be maintained equally.
In a much broader sense, it means to utilise more time for leisure things, family time or simply self care. It is something which many youths, including myself, struggle with. It’s difficult to find a space that is just the right balance of work and leisure.
The reason why work-life balance has become such a growing topic in discussions among the self-help and self-care community is because the “constant hustle” cultre has fixed the idea of constantly being on the go, working and being productive into the workforce and has made it the norm.
This has built the toxic idea in most workplace employees that they should be constantly on the go and hustling, being productive instead of taking time off for themselves and doing things that they love.
Even if you love your job & are motivated to work, overworking yourself without taking breaks will eventually lead to some resentment – either towards yourself, your colleagues or even your job.
Constantly being on the run, working even on the weekends will lead to eventual burnout – be it mentally or physically – this is what leads to resentment & negative feelings which is your mind & body’s indication to needing a break.
Assuming that working harder than others will lead you to great success in your career is wrong. Yes, it might help to get ahead, but at the cost of your own well being.
Before going into work-life balance, you need to know what is ‘balance’ for you.
Write down the things in your life that are priorities, then analyse your life daily life and try to make an estimate on how much time you’re able to allot to each priority.
Then take a moment to reflect on that.
Are you happy with that? What would you like to change? How much of a change do you want? How will that change your life?
When you realise how you want your day-to-day life to be organized it becomes easier to schedule your day accordingly.
Set a fixed schedule for workdays with fixed times for work and fun things that you enjoy .
When you have a fixed schedule, especially one that is more or less consistent throughout all workdays, it becomes much easier to get into that ‘flow’ state of work and enjoy uninterrupted work times. Also helps you detangle yourself from work after a specific time and just enjoy other things.
Now, it might seem easy to fix a schedule and plan out your entire day, but the difficult part is sticking to that workplan and being consistent with it.
Especially as someone like me who doesn’t fit well with schedules and hates being routine, it gets boring.
Turn off work mode – both, from your devices and your head.
Turn off work and email notifications. If possible, turn off devices and spend time doing the things that make you happy or spend time with people that make you happy.
It’s important to not let work distract you during times that are supposed to be your ‘off’ times.
Obviously this won’t work for you if you have a job that requires you to be on alert most of the times.
But for a student plus writer like me, it’s easy to shut off my phone and go out on a walk or read or study my favourite subjects.
When you have a schedule and fixed times for everything, there is only that limited time for you to work and to relax.
It’s important to learn to maintain that boundary between your work and your personal life.
Learn to not bring your work into your personal space, to give time to people outside of the work environment and maintain balance.
The way to achieve this balance is from within, it is a resultant of your own choices and it’s important for you to make wise decisions and respect the boundary that you have created for yourself.
If you are someone like me who finds it difficult to work within boundaries,it’s going to be a difficult task to navigate through them and be disciplined, but the only way to have successful work-life balance is by execution- simply learn to work within boundaries and stick to your routine.
After atleast a month of following through, go back to analysing your daily life. Ask yourself the same questions you asked yourself in the first step.
Are your answers different now? Do you feel more happy/content with the way your work-life balance is now?
Observe and reflect on your emotions before and after and see if things have changed.
So when it is clear that having a perfect work-life balance isn’t possible and yet we pressurise ourselves to live that way, it is just like running a race but in the opposite direction to everyone else – you might feel like you’re winning when in reality you’re making decisions that will not benefit you.
It’s important to accept that the idea of perfect work-life balance is not correct. Accept that you cannot treat things as rigid blocks, sometimes things are just grey
Work-life integration removes the idea of having a perfectly balanced equation between work and life and blends everything together.
To be precise, it removes the rigid boundaries between your personal and professional life and sets your day in such a way that work, health, family, self, everything is given appropriate attention but without the strict regimes and schedules.
It is a way of creating a collaboration between many areas of your life.
With the added flexibility to your life, it becomes easier to manage work and personal life and if you feel like adding more things to your life, you can easily do that.
It gives the opportunity to be professional while handling many things at the same time and still remain sane !
Hi! I'm Anu, 17 year old in love with reading, writing and being creative. I also love music and arts and crafts. The idea of spreading love, peace and happiness around keeps me going ♥️
Having work-life balance is an important thing.. or is it? Here is debate about the pros and cons of work-life balance and a slightly better option.
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