It’s Wednesday and I’m Out of Juice (On Work/Life Balance)
No, not orange juice or beer. I am also not referring to the ‘juice’ in cars (aka, gas…my dad’s slang, in case you’re wondering). I’m referring to energy. Seriously, I can’t believe it’s only Wednesday.
It’s been a busy week at work, I haven’t managed to exercise, and am in need of my monthly B12 shot. And I know I am not alone in my feelings of fatigue and weariness.
Fatigue and burnout are sadly becoming more common. We seem to be working longer hours, typically in front of a computer, with minimal activity, and while sometimes beneficial, we are always connected. Smartphones allow for quick and easy conversation – a client/parent/partner now has the ability to know where you are at all times. Well, not so much where you are, but they know they can reach you at all hours if they wanted. This presents a major barrier to maintaining our work/life balance.
I’m not going to go on some boring diatribe about society and technology. In all honesty, the technological advances that I have seen in my lifetime are incredible and I look forward to what the future holds. Yet, if our technological world continues to advance, which it inevitably will, we need to become a little more savvy at maintaining the separation between work- and home-life.
Some simple suggestions:
- Determine a time to shut off your phone each night
- Do not accept a work phone/pager unless you absolutely have to
- Do not connect work email to your personal Smartphone
- Determine a time that you will no longer answer work emails (or personal for that matter – we need time away from the screen)
- Reduce Facebook checking time (I am pointing the finger in my direction as I am guilty of being a regular Facebook checker…okay, stalker)
- Shut-down or close your computer at the same time each night (sometimes difficult, but try)
- Say ‘no’ to working on the weekends…regularly. Sometimes we have a big project or event, just don’t make working on the weekends a regular event.
- Take your lunch break. This one is so simple, but rarely done.
- Plan an activity after work that will get you out of the office at a decent time
- Be sure to track and take your lieu time.
Rarely does anyone have their work/life scale in perfect balance. It’s a constant challenge. While difficult, I would encourage you to try out a few of the suggestions above and track (by writing down or recording) how you feel. My gut tells me you might actually enjoy it.