nav-left cat-right

Ten Tips for Achieving Better Work Life Balance

We are all looking to achieve optimal work/personal life balance. Consider the following tips for getting closer to reaching your best by establishing a routine that works for you. Whether you work from home (WFH) or commute to an office every day, even adopting one of these tips and putting it into practice will make a difference.

1. Work From Home tip – finish working on time. Work in a separate, designated office, room or workspace with natural light.

2. Keep your office and home surroundings organized and tidy. Go though closets, drawers, cabinets and get rid of ‘stuff’ that’s weighing you down.

3. When/if you get bored or ‘burned out,’ freshen up your routine (activities, hobbies, foods, recreation).

4. Take a lunch break away from your desk, for at least 30 minutes.

5. Avoid overbooking/over scheduling your days/time.

6. Stay on track with 5 essential tasks/day that get you closer to meeting your goals.

7. Read and then re-read emails before sending them. Keep them short, to the point, positive and professional – a reflection of you.

8. Make a note (journal) of the lesson/what you learned from making a mistake/a wrong choice so you don’t repeat it.

9. Group like tasks together in a comfortable, efficient and orderly manner. Avoid jumping around from task to task. Establish a flow to your day that makes sense.

10. Whenever you have a break, squeeze in a walk. Prioritize exercise, at least 15 minutes, either before or after work.

Eustress versus Distress

Stress is both good and bad depending on the source, length of exposure and our reaction (positive or negative). Different situations and life events can cause stress. On the one hand, good stress, eustress, motivates us to action and stimulates us in good ways.

Eustress leads to excitement and anticipation. Life changes, small challenges and new experiences often cause short-term eustress. Examples of situations inciting eustress include being in a new relationship, trying a new workout or physical challenge, starting a new project or job at work. Though similar in physical reaction to chronic, overwhelming stress (initially), eustress typically incites positive change or growth as a result. It’s good for us, improving resiliency and giving life purpose.

Chronic, overwhelming stress from negative situations is not so healthy. It can be persistent, long-lasting and emotionally draining versus energizing. Difficult situations may cause excessive worry. It’s important to do what you can to control this type of stress, even if it’s by reframing the issue or changing how you respond to the situation. Click here for stress management strategies. One way to change your mindset is to change how you think of a stressor. Thinking of it as a challenge versus a threat can make a big difference in your attitude and approach.




What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is state of being. It’s not a specific exercise or activity. Being mindful is characterized by having a heightened sense of awareness and acceptance (without judgement). It doesn’t involve clearing your mind or getting lost in your thoughts. On the contrary, you are aware of physical sensations, thoughts and feelings as they occur, completely in the present moment. When you notice a thought, such as ‘I feel anxious,’ you leave it there. You don’t judge the feeling, elaborate on it or try to change it. Simply observe it.

You tune into sounds, smells, notice how your body moves and feels. You pay attention to your breathing. It’s a matter of taking everything in through a sense of awareness and peace. There are many ways to practice mindfulness, such as through meditation, a walk in nature, eating with mindfulness and being aware of all of your senses: seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling and feeling. You are not distracted with thoughts but are present in the moment, in the place, taking everything in.

Why practice mindfulness? Benefits include improved mental processing speed, focus and clarity, less intense/frequent feelings of anxiety and depression, improved adaptability during times of stress, decreased rumination and an enhanced ability to manage your emotions.