The common term for the balance between life and work is “work-life” balance. I would argue that we’re putting too much emphasis on work by putting it first. It’s time we start looking at creating more of a “life-work” balance. You should invest in yourself first – put your family, health, and personal time first. We all know how important it is to bring in money to live, but why does that have to drive how we live? When we talk about life-work balance, we are really talking about work-time-health-relationship balance.
To achieve a healthy life-work balance, you need to set up a few rules and routines for yourself that govern your personal life versus your work life. Here are four areas to focus on.
Find extra time
How many times have you said, “there are just not enough hours in the day.” If I had a dollar for every person that has said that, I would be a millionaire already. Although the solution is simple, many people get so caught up in the day-to-day that they forget to take a step back and see the bigger picture.
Planning your days properly can save you time. In conducting a time audit, you will be surprised at how much time you can find/save. This saved time can be re-invested in more important endeavours. Here are a few time-saving approaches that will help:
- Don’t schedule meetings before 11 a.m.: Travelling anywhere in any city before that time is simply inefficient.
- Run errands counter to other people’s schedule, if possible: Run your personal errands on a Wednesday morning (return items to a store on a Wednesday 10 a.m., haircut, get car washed, etc.)
- Outsource: hire people to do the things that take too much of your time (accountant, lawn cutting, house cleaning, etc.). Use that time to connect with friends and loved ones. That is balance! And that is return on investment on time and finances.
- Use technology: Technology exists to make life easier, so take advantage of it. For example, why would you spend time going into a store when you can use Amazon for shopping? When you do have to go somewhere, use technology to tell you how to get there fastest. I use Waze every time I get in the car.