Balancing Act

The importance of work-life balance

Work-life balance is a term so often used in this day-in-age. The average adult works at least five days a week, for eight to ten hours. Others work every day of their lives. But having a personal life, a life outside of work is one of the most important things I have learned throughout my professional career. It typically takes a professional, especially an entrepreneur, years to figure this out – but trust me when I tell you, the reason you’re working as hard as you do is so you can enjoy your life. 

I have seen multiple YouTube videos of interviews with elderly folks. When they’re asked what advice they’d give to the younger generations, they often say spend as much time with your family and friends as possible. Think about that.

Work-life balance is also more than just spending time with friends and family. It’s also important so you can have more experiences, achieve more personal goals, and destress. 

A balance between your personal life and work, when done right, can help with the following: 

Work-life balance helps with your stress 

You may feel there are times in your life where you cannot take time away from work. Maybe you are being pressured by your boss, maybe your workload is exponential, or maybe you run the business and you’re struggling to gain new clientele. Whatever it is, know this: 

  • In the United States, STRESS is the fifth biggest cause of death. 
  • In the United States, 25% of Americans think their job is the main source of stress in their lives. 

What people don’t realize is that stress can lead to other chronic issues, including but not limited to depression, anxiety, headaches, and muscle aches. Your overall wellbeing is at stake. 

Here’s what I suggest: if work is the main source of stress in your life: 

  • If something isn’t important, you don’t need to say yes
  • Delegate your work and don’t worry about it 
  • Decide what is important and act on it. Don’t focus on the non-important tasks. 
  • Take care of yourself. It’s okay to take a mental health day. It’s okay to be off the clock at the end of your shift. It’s okay to say no. 

When you start creating boundaries and prioritizing work, you will more than likely feel a bit of stress relief. With that relief, you’ll have more time to focus on your personal life. 

Work-life balance helps with your physical health 

Having a balanced work life and personal life means you have time to take care of yourself. You have time to exercise. You have time to be thoughtful about what you put into your body and the foods you consume. You have time to get enough sleep. 

After work, most professionals go home and sit on the couch at night zoned out, turning their brain off from work – if possible. Maybe with a glass of wine, or three. Take out being delivered. Exhausted mentally. 

Little things can help improve your physical health. What is a 20-minute walk home or around your neighborhood? How about picking that salad over the burger during lunch? Drinking in moderation and not often? You get the point. I’m not here to lecture you – I just know for me having good physical health leads to me having stronger mental health. 

Work-life balance helps with your mental health 

Having a healthy work-life balance can help with your mental health. When the only thing buzzing around your head is work, your brain can feel scrambled – most likely because it needs a break. 

If you want to have a calm and peaceful life, balance in your life is essential. You will have clearer thoughts, you will spend more time thinking through decisions you have to make, and you will understand your emotions and thoughts on a deeper level. 

Your mindset benefits from having a healthy work-life balance. 

Work-life balance helps with your relationships 

This one is probably obvious, but if you make more time for your personal life, which includes friends and family, you will have stronger relationships with those people. You will be happier and so will the people you care about. 

Just remember to put the technology away and be present in your relationships. Always focusing on or talking about work can be exhausting not just for you, but for the people around you too. There is more to life than work. 

But here’s the best part; when you have work-life balance, you’ll most likely have a stronger relationship in the most important relationship of all – the one with yourself. 

Work-life balance helps with your career

Crazy concept, right? When you have work-life balance, you are more present and engaged at work, which typically results in being a better worker and enjoying your job more. 

If you have a job where they focus on work-life balance, you are more likely to be loyal to that company because they value your personal and private time. When you’re more engaged at work, you tend to care more about what you’re doing. You take more pride in the work you produce. You have more productive relationships with your colleagues. 

When you produce higher-quality work you’re proud of, not only is your employer happy, but so are you.

Work-life balance helps with your creativity

When your brain is buzzing constantly, there’s little to no room for creativity. When your mind is at ease, you’re not constantly swarming social media, and you have a balanced life, you are more creative in your thought process. 

Think about how when your mind is clear how much more efficient you are, how you’re able to solve problems faster, how you may be cleverer. This all relates to a healthy work-life balance. 

When it comes to work-life balance, I think you get the point – IT’S IMPORTANT! Some other aspects of your life it can benefit include: 

  • Creating and maintaining personal boundaries
  • More time outdoors 
  • The ability to prioritize what is important and what is not – in and out of work 
  • Happiness
  • Fulfillment 
  • Higher levels of professional and personal success 

Maintain your balance and cherish it. The reality is, no one on their deathbed ever said they wished they had worked more. In fact, they always wish for more time for what really matters in life – and what that is is up for you to decide.