Five Ways to Improve Work/Life Balance

We all have constant tasks and distractions competing for our limited time and attention. Successful people force this idea as an either/or situation, but significant individuals learn how to experience a harmonious life, which is an either/and accomplishment.

In order to achieve this harmony, there are five practices you can incorporate into your life that will yield great benefits.

1. Make work time more efficient. Are there ways you can streamline routine tasks or delegate some responsibilities to trusted colleagues?

2. Get all partners involved. Shifting the work/life balance conversation requires men to translate their family-oriented identity into effective time spent with their wife and children, and taking on new roles in the home. More women are in the workforce, trying to burn the candle at both ends, and men are rarely asked how they manage to juggle a career and children.

3. Establish non-negotiables. When you think of all the things in your life that are important, both work and non-work priorities, what are the things you absolutely cannot sacrifice including attending important family events, being there for a loved one or getting regular exercise. Put these valuable activities into your schedule and plan your workday around them.

4. Set communication boundaries. A recent survey showed that at least half of all working adults check work email on evenings and weekends, while on vacation and when home sick. Blurring the boundaries between work and life may feel like it increases productivity, but over time it can contribute to work/life conflict.

5. Consider quality of life over quantity of income. Research suggests that a salary level beyond $75,000 per year doesn’t increase one’s level of happiness. In most cases, exorbitant salaries only purchase counterfeit happiness—and greater unbalance. If you’re in a professional position that makes the kind of work/life balance you want impossible, it may be worth reconsidering so you can focus on other aspects of your life.

Your transformation from successful to significant begins when you let go of the notion of multitasking to become an effective and efficient juggler. You only control the ball you hold in your hand, once you let go of the ball, you relinquish control until you catch it again.

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