If you’re like me, before opening an article like this, you’d have probably laughed and just decided to just read this for the fun of it because how can you really have work life balance when this life has no balance at all?
I know how you feel. However work/life balance is an actual real concept. It exists, it is not impossible, it can be done. I feel that what we need to do first of all is define work/ life balance to clear out any misconceptions you might have about it.
Work/life balance actually means to manage your time properly between work and other areas of your life. It’s just to ensure that while you work other areas of your life aren’t suffering for it.
Work/ life balance is a structure that helps you achieve much at work and also in every area of your life. One doesn’t always have to suffer for the others to thrive unlike the popular notion.
At this point, it’s important for you to know what I’m not saying. I’m not saying you’ll get to spend as much time as you work on every other thing in your life.
The idea is for you to have time to do other things rather than work. It doesn’t mean you’ll also get to work from 9-5 or 10-4 for the other areas of your life. So it’s not that it balances 100% but that there’s a relative balance between work and other aspects of your life.
Work/life balance is about setting priorities in your life and taking each priority as one. It’s not about expecting to spend equal time at work and then outside work, it’s about making the best out of every time spent at work and without.
So why is work/life balance important?
In a world where we are juggling a million things, work/ life balance helps you see that you can’t do everything. You need to make priorities and in doing so, cut out unnecessary spending of your time, things that render it void.
Work/ life balance also ensures that you’re not always at war with your mind, your body and other areas of your life. You can have a life without this constant war and conflict and that’s what work/ life balance helps with.
Work/ life balance is peace. If you’re like me, you know how hard it is to shut down your brain at night cause of so many tasks and things to do on your mind. Work/ life balance helps you know what to cut away from your time and prioritize every existing area of your life.
For some years, I managed a very busy academic schedule and it always ended up interrupting almost every area of my life. It was difficult knowing where and when to draw boundaries, and I was constantly biting off more than I could chew because I also had other leadership positions and opportunities. I was “all work and no play,” which took a toll on every area of my life including my health.
Achieving balance as an entrepreneur or someone who juggles a lot in general can feel like a daunting task. But it’s possible. First, you need to realize that balance doesn’t always mean equal.
Here’s a simple task you can do in this direction today. Write down how you spend most of your time daily and even on weekends. What takes up most of it? What other important things do you desire to do or be a part of that you’re not? Then start making simple plans to show up regularly at them.