Success is a product of both skill and hard work. However, too much work can be unhealthy for your mind, body, and social life. To reach your goals, it is best to lead a balanced life. Here are 11 signs you should keep an eye on to bring your work-life balance back on track.
#1 You’re always tired.
Too much stress causes physical illnesses and lowers the immune system so you are more prone to fatigue and sickness. Stress causes the muscles and the brain to go into ‘overdrive’ which easily makes your body ache and feel drained. Watch for these stress-related symptoms: muscle soreness, chronic headaches, light-headedness, poor appetite, poor memory, low mood, and lack of motivation. Try to sleep at least 7-8 hours a day and start to step up your self-care routine to refresh your mind and body.
#2 You always work overtime.
If you spend more time at work than at home, then that’s a clear sign that you need to manage your time better. It’s alright to spend a few more minutes at work to finish your tasks for the day, or even to get a headstart for the next day, however, doing this every day is not a good habit. Managing and prioritising your tasks for the day would make you be more productive and help you get out of the office as soon as you can.
#3 You bring your work home.
According to a study by Scott Schieman of the University of Toronto, 50% of people bring their work home and work-life interference is high with people who “hold professional jobs with more authority, decision-making latitude, pressure, and longer hours.” If you can’t take a hold of your work life, then it will continue to seep through your personal life. Remember that time after work should be time spent with yourself and your loved ones. Bring work home only when necessary and work for a short time only.
#4 You’re getting out of shape.
Did you notice you’re recently gaining weight? Your body is telling you that you should move more. Take a little break and walk around your office. Don’t have time to hit the gym? You can still exercise at home using these fitness apps as a guide to count your calories and burn some pounds.
#5 You don’t have time to enjoy yourself anymore.
When was the last time you watched a movie in the cinema or travelled with a friend? Focusing too much on work could let you miss out on fun experiences and valuable time with family and friends. Make sure to do at least one thing you enjoy each week.
#6 You’re struggling with your relationships.
Lack of work-life balance inevitably puts a strain on relationships due to lack of time with each other. If you can’t fit time with your loved ones into your schedule then you need to re-prioritise your goals and put spending time with them a bit higher. Talk more on the dinner table or chat with an old friend. Not only is it a way to de-stress, but it is also a way for us to not forget to spend time with the people who truly support us. Realise that time at work can be caught up, but time and experiences with loved ones cannot.
#7 You don’t know what to prioritise.
Do you always end your day with too many unfinished tasks? This might be a sign that you are taking on too much work than you can handle. Learn to prioritise and focus on tasks that are important. If you are a manager, learn how to delegate. Stop trying to do everything by yourself. Instead of multi-tasking and trying to finish 10 tasks at a time, start with the most urgent and make your way down the list. Whatever can’t be done today, can be tackled tomorrow.
#8 You lose your patience way too easily.
Stress can definitely put us on edge. Being easily irritated or angry over simple matters is a clear sign that you need to step back and take a breather. If you don’t, sooner or later, you will crack under pressure. Always look at the bright side of things to train your mind to focus on the positive.
#9 Your personal space is a mess.
Having no time for yourself means having no time to clean. Your desk has become a pile of papers, and your home has become merely a place to sleep and shower. In Psychology Today, Sherrie Bourg Carter, Psy.D explains that a messy workspace overloads the brain and leads to burnout. Make it a habit to clean your desks at the end of each day.
#10 You don’t take a day off.
Dedication to work is admirable, but health should always be a priority. Use your holiday and sick leaves when rest is needed. Try to refresh your mind and body, so you can have the energy to take on the challenges headed your way.
#11 You’re always thinking of work
Even when you’re outside with friends or family you always think or talk about work. Learn to let go and relax for a moment. It’s good that you’re actively working towards your goals, but remember, too much of everything is bad for you. Work-life balance is key for a well-rounded success.
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