Balance of personal vs work life

What Keeps You Awake at Night?

Personal Life vs. Work Life

Elena Mozhvilo – Unsplash

You wonder if it is truly possible to enjoy a life where you can ‘Play Longer.’ You wonder if the rat race our society seems to be in is all that there is, and would love to find another way to enjoy life with your family and friends.              

Tara Ross, Work Smarter, Play Longer

There are many things regarding work that keep us awake at night.

These can include one or more of the following:

  • Poor Project Management
  • Poor leadership
  • Not meeting your goals
  • Not being respected or liked

But, perhaps one of the biggest reasons for losing sleep is how your work life and personal life conflict with each other. This is something many people deal with, balance of life and dealing with the conundrum, “Do we live to work or do we work to live?”

Balanced living means considering all aspects of your life, including how to balance work with our personal needs.

We can get bogged down with work and family responsibilities from time to time. But, making time for ourselves is necessary so that we can keep up with all of our responsibilities.

A good work-life balance, said Chris Chancey a career expert and CEO of Amplio Recruiting, has numerous positive effects. These  may include less stress, a lower risk of burnout and a greater sense of well-being.

It is hard to not only achieve a balance, but to keep certain aspects of our lives from crowding into each other. If we are continually bringing our personal life and problems to work and vice versa, that can cause problems in either or both. We can then neither enjoy either or focus on what needs to be done.

If that is the case, what are we to do? Well. We can follow these things to bring more balance Into our lives:

So, we have to prioritize what is important, both at work and personally. We then need to focus on the important things and get them completed before taking on something new.

We have only so many resources: time, energy, money, etc. We must acknowledge and accept that we cannot do everything all the time.

The exception is when an emergency comes our way. We must then put other things aside to handle that. Then it is back to business as usual.

We have to manage ourselves. That in itself can be a big task.

It always seems easier to manage others and what they are doing. We make judgements on what is and isn’t important and direct them accordingly.

But, when it comes to ourselves, it is sometimes that we can’t see the forest for the trees. And we get caught up in too many things because we are not being objective, like we are with others.

That has to stop or we will be caught in a never ending stream of trying to do too much at any time. And too often, we allow work to take precedence over personal matters.  

Balance, everything in balance, and we will be just fine.

We need to “Add and subtract.”

Keeping things in balance means when you add a new venture, something must be taken away. As we close a new venture we can add a new one. Or if we find that something is bigger and more time consuming than we thought, that we have to put something aside until more time is freed up to deal with it.

I have always known my limitations. I do not take on more than I can handle knowing full well that if I do, I will do a terrible job with everything.

We must all realize that we have limitations and if we try to do too much and accomplish nothing, we have done no one including ourselves a good service.

Sometimes we just need to say “No”,

We want to please everybody. At least that is what we think we are doing when we say, “Yes”

In reality, we are setting ourselves and possibly those we said yes to,  to failure and disappointment.

There are times to say, “No” or “Not now, later”. There is nothing wrong with that. Another person’s priority is not necessarily ours unless we allow it to be.

As children perhaps our first word and in many cases our favorite word was, “No”. Somehow between then and adulthood that word got lost and isn’t used as much.

We should reintroduce this into our vocabularies. We shouldn’t overuse it, but use it when needed. And remember, it is needed more than we think it is.

We need to schedule time for ourselves.

Part of our life balance is having our own time, where we can do whatever we want, even if that is just quiet time alone.

There are times we need to be selfish. There is nothing wrong with that. If we don’t spend time on and for us, we should not expect that anyone else will.

Perhaps this is what really keeps us awake at night. When nothing is about us, we react in many different ways. Losing sleep and not performing in our others areas is a result of this.

So we need to plan some undisturbed me time. And then use it.

We need to live with purpose.

Everything we do needs some purpose. We work to make our companies successful and to provide the resources to buy food, clothing, a home, education and other things for us and our family.

We spend time with the family to provide education, support and to show our love for them.

And, we spend time on and for ourselves in order to do things we want or like to do and to get away from the other things in our lives.

Everything we do should have a purpose.

If not, we are wasting the precious time we have on this earth. We need to make the most of our time.

César León – Unsplash

So is the struggle between work and your personal life “What Keeps You Awake at Night?”

It really doesn’t have to be that way. It is all about achieving a balance.

For some of us, that balance may never be achieved. There are a variety of reasons for that including:

  • Work is the most important aspect of our life
  • We struggle with our personal life, so we compensate by spending more time at work
  • We have put ourselves in positions where work takes priority over other things

If any or all of these are the case for our predicament, it may be hard or impossible for us to break that paradigm. Or maybe we don’t want to, but will continue to wallow in what we have created for ourselves.

Change is a hard thing to do. We are creatures of habit and even when we don’t like certain circumstances, we continue because it is sure and certain for us. We stay with the known, even when it is uncomfortable or harmful.

This piece is not for people in this situation. All of the writing and talking in the world will not help them. It is for those who are not happy with their situation and want to and will do something about it.

For those who want to change, I quote:

“Self-care is, fundamentally, about bringing balance back to a life that has grown imbalanced from too many commitments or responsibilities.” Robyn L. Gobin, The self-care prescription

If you are serious and are tired, literally, of “Keeping Awake at Night” then get started today. As the saying goes, “The longest journey starts with one small step”. Not only will you sleep better at night, but you will be more fulfilled and probably be more productive at your job.

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