How to Find a Healthy Work-Life Balance in a High-Pressure Job
With technology use at an all-time high, it’s seemingly impossible to separate work and life. Work is constantly at your fingertips and it takes self-control, and discipline to step away– especially in a high-pressure job. It seems there’s always more to do, and a lot is asked of you. This can come with stress that damages your relationships, health, and overall happiness. So how do you manage? How do you find work-life balance?
Well, let’s first define work-life balance. What does this mean and why is it important?
Work-life balance is essentially the state of equilibrium where a person prioritizes the demands of one’s career and the demands of one’s personal life effectively. It’s a tricky thing to define as it’s very personal in how it can be accomplished, but when done correctly, a person will be living a stable and sustainable lifestyle. This is important to avoid burnout, minimize work-related stress, stay happy and healthy, and reach your all-round goals in life.
How can this be achieved?
1. Accept there is no perfect one-size-fits-all solution.
There is no perfect schedule and every day does not need to be the same. Accept that it’s not always possible to have a productive workday and then a lovely night with friends or family. Be gentle with yourself– some days, you may stay longer at work and others more time being social and doing the things you love. This ‘balance’ we speak of will work itself out over time, not strictly every single day. Work hard to feel into the needs of each day, be in the present moment, and do what makes the most sense. Be aware of every aspect of your life, and prioritize accordingly.
2. Unplug and be present.
Technology is a blessing and a curse, but if you manage it well, you will see vast improvements in work-life balance. Set boundaries. Do not check work emails after certain hours and during ‘quality time’. By not reacting to updates from work immediately, you will naturally build better control of your life.
3. Make your health a priority.
Getting enough sleep, eating healthy, and exercising are non-negotiables. It’s easy to let it slip in a high-pressure job, but these have to be done daily to maintain a work-life balance. Establish a morning routine you are excited about– this helps to separate life from work and is a great way to have a more productive day. Learn to meal-prep, research mood-boosting foods, new recipes, and complement this with exercise. Whether it’s a daily walk, yoga, or a full work out, it’s guaranteed to boost your overall well being. And it doesn’t stop here, making health a priority includes mental health. If you struggle with anxiety or depression, fit therapy into your schedule. If you are struggling with any illness, call in sick on bad days. Overworking in conjunction with other issues not only prevents you from getting better but it affects your performance. Taking care of your health creates a happier you.
4. Make time for yourself and your loved ones
Your job is very important, but do not let it consume your whole life. Be mindful of the things and people that bring you joy. No one at work will love or appreciate you the way your family and friends do. We mentioned ‘quality time’ earlier, but let’s dig deeper. Quality time is time set aside to spend with someone or yourself, giving your complete undivided attention. Quality time can be scheduled for you and your partner, you and your family, and you and yourself. Taking time completely away– believe it or not, will make you more productive at work.
5. Set goals and priorities
Setting goals is a great way to keep your work-life balance in check. Separate your goals, make sure they are achievable, and that you are passionate about them. Think about career, health, and relationships. Write your goals down and set time limits on them, come back and check how you are doing every so often.
Work-life balance will not come overnight. It’s something you have to work towards. Implement these tips, prioritize your health, and you will be well on your way to maintaining a happy work life and personal life. Don’t give up, it’s very much worth it in the long run.