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15 Ways To Keep Work And Family Balance

15 Ways To Keep Work And Family Balance

Managing a work and family balance can be complicated at times. However, it’s possible to devote enough attention to both your professional life and your family life if you follow these steps.

1. Address Concerns From Your Family

Be willing to listen to concerns from your family about your work life. When you work long hours, your spouse, children, and perhaps even extended family will express concerns about you. Spend time listening to what they have to say and agree that you’ll take their feelings into consideration.

2. Allow Family to Help You

Allow family to help out whenever possible. Look for ways in which they can lighten your load. Whether you allow your mother to pick up your dry cleaning or your spouse to organize your folders, including them in the process can help free up some of your time.

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3. Stick to a Work Schedule

Try to establish a firm work schedule. Today’s world allows many people to work from home which can blur the lines between work and family. Establish a clear work schedule and start and stop work on time whether you’re at the office or you’re working from home.

4. Establish Work Goals that Align with Family Goals

Create goals for your job that align with your family goals. For example, working to save money for a family vacation will make the time you spend away from family seem worthwhile. Create goals that take the entire family into consideration and remind your family how the end result will benefit everyone.

5. Explain Your Work to Your Family

Sometimes family members feel left out when they don’t explain the nature of your work. Explain what you do and why it requires a lot of your time and energy.

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6. Limit Electronics Use at Home

Be both mentally and physically present with your family when you’re at home. Avoid checking work-related emails and answering work-related phone calls when you’re with your family. Limit your use of electronics so you can spend quality time with your family.

7. Set Aside Regular Family Time

Set aside time to spend with your family on a regular basis. On a daily basis, try to spend a few minutes each day talking with your spouse or reading with the children. Then, plan for longer periods of family time on the weekends or other days off.

8. Reward Yourself for Reaching Goals

Reward yourself when you reach your work-related goals. For example, if you’re working long hours to finish a particular project, when it’s all done, take the family out for dinner to celebrate. Rewards can help remind you to celebrate your accomplishments.

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9. Plan Your Schedule with Family

Look at the calendar at the beginning of each week and plan your schedule. Decide which family functions and children’s activities are going to be most important for you to attend. This will help you plan ahead and determine which days you have more time to devote to work.

10. Practice Separating Work and Home Life

Develop rituals and practices that help you separate work and home. For example, use your commute to unwind from a day at the office so once you’re home you can focus on your family and leave work behind.

11. Address Productivity Issues that May Slow You Down

Take a look at your work productivity and determine strategies that can help you be more productive. This will help you get the most done in the least amount of time, which can free you up to spend more time with your loved ones.

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12. Take Time for Yourself

Although you may not feel like you can take time for yourself, it’s important to to do so. Taking time for yourself can help ensure you will be at your best, both physically and mentally, when you’re at work or spending time with family.

13. Re-Evaluate Your Schedule and Priorities Often

Examine how you are doing in terms of balancing your work and family life often. Make adjustments when you’re not happy with the way things have been happening.

14. Hold Regular Family Meetings

Meet with your family regularly to discuss your work and family balance. Discuss any changes you may need to make and keep one another informed about what’s going on.

15. Keep a Time Diary

Keep a time diary that outlines how and where you spend your time for a week. This can help you see where your time goes. Sometimes people are surprised to see how much time they really devote to certain activities, such as watching TV.

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Amy Morin

A psychotherapist, psychology instructor, keynote speaker, and the author of the bestselling book 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don't Do

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Last Updated on December 2, 2019

10 Powerful Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living Today

10 Powerful Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living Today

Plato knew that the body and mind are intimately linked. And in the late 1800s, the Mayo brothers, famous physicians, estimated that over half of all hospital beds are filled with people suffering from frustration, anxiety, worry and despair. Causes of worry are everywhere, in our relationships and our jobs, so it’s key we find ways to take charge of the stress.

In his classic book How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, Dale Carnegie offers tools to ditch excessive worrying that help you make a worry-free environment for your private and professional life.

These are the top 10 tips to grab worry by the horns and wrestle it to the ground:

1. Make Your Decision and Never Look Back

Have you ever made a decision in life only to second-guess it afterwards? Of course you have! It’s hard not to wonder whether you’ve done the right thing and whether there might still be time to take another path.

But keep this in mind: you’ve already made your decision, so act decisively on it and dismiss all your anxiety about it.

Don’t stop to hesitate, to reconsider, or to retrace your steps. Once you’ve chosen a course of action, stick to it and never waver.

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2. Live for Today, Package Things up in “Day-Tight Compartments”

You know that feeling: tossing, turning and worrying over something that happened or something that might, well into the wee hours. To avoid this pointless worrying, you need “day-tight compartments”. Much as a ship has different watertight compartments, your own “day-tight” ones are a way to limit your attention to the present day.

The rule is simple: whatever happened in the past or might happen in the future must not intrude upon today. Everything else has to wait its turn for tomorrow’s box or stay stuck in the past.

3. Embrace the Worst-Case Scenario and Strategize to Offset It

If you’re worried about something, ask yourself: “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” Could you lose your job? Be jailed? Get killed?

Whatever the “worst” might be, it’s probably not so world-ending. You could probably even bounce back from it!

If, for example, you lose your job, you could always find another. Once you accept the worst-case scenario and get thinking about contingency plans, you’ll feel calmer.

4. Put a Lid on Your Worrying

Sometimes we stress endlessly about negative experiences when just walking away from them would serve us far better.

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To make squashing that worry easier, try this strategy, straight from stock traders: it’s called the “stop-loss” order, where shares are bought at a certain price, and then their price development is observed. If things go badly and the share price hits a certain point, they are sold off immediately. This stops the loss from increasing further.

In the same manner, you can put a stop-loss order on things that cause you stress and grief.

5. Fake It ‘Til You Make It – Happiness, That Is

We can’t directly influence how we feel, but we can nudge ourselves to change through how we think and act.

If you’re feeling sad or low, slap a big grin on your face and whistle a chipper tune. You’ll find it impossible to be blue when acting cheerful. But you don’t necessarily need to act outwardly happy; you can simply think happier thoughts instead.

Marcus Aurelius summed it up aptly:

“Our life is what our thoughts make it.”

6. Give for the Joy of Giving

When we perform acts of kindness, we often do so with the expectation of gratitude. But harboring such expectations will probably leave you disappointed.

One person well aware of this fact was the lawyer Samuel Leibowitz. Over the course of his career, Leibowitz saved 78 people from going to the electric chair. Guess how many thanked him? None.

So stop expecting gratitude when you’re kind to someone. Instead, take joy from the act yourself.

7. Dump Envy – Enjoy Being Uniquely You

Your genes are completely unique. Even if someone had the same parents as you, the likelihood of someone identical to you being born is just one in 300,000 billion.

Despite this amazing fact, many of us long to be someone else, thinking the grass is greener on the other side of the fence. But living your life this way is pointless. Embrace your uniqueness and get comfortable with who you really are: How to Be True to Yourself and Live the Life You Want

8. Haters Will Hate — It Just Means You’re Doing It Right

When you’re criticized, it often means you’re accomplishing something noteworthy. In fact, let’s take it a step further and consider this: the more you’re criticized, the more influential and important a person you likely are.

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So the next time somebody talks you down, don’t let it get to you. Take it as a compliment!

9. Chill Out! Learn to Rest Before You Get Tired

Scientists agree that emotions are the most common cause of fatigue. And it works the other way around, too: fatigue produces more worries and negative emotions.

It should be clear, therefore, that you’ve got to relax regularly before you feel tired. Otherwise, worries and fatigue will accumulate on top of each other.

It’s impossible to worry when you are relaxed, and regular rest helps you maintain your ability to work effectively.

10. Get Organized and Enjoy Your Work

There are few greater sources of misery in life than having to work, day in, day out, in a job you despise. It would make sense then that you shouldn’t pick a job you hate, or even just dislike doing.

But say you already have a job. How can you make it more enjoyable and worry-free? One way is to stay organized: a desk full of unanswered mails and memos is sure to breed worries.

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Better yet, rethink about the job you’re doing: What to Do When You Hate Your Job but Want a Successful Career

More About Living a Fulfilling Life

Featured photo credit: Tyler Nix via unsplash.com

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