Struggling with the Work Life Balance
When I first moved to our new house I had the time to take care of me and it felt wonderful. I definitely felt the benefits of eating well, taking care of the home, walking miles on a daily basis, daily exercise and generally working on my mental and physical health left me in a positive place. During that time I was working from home and I had reduced my hours so I had plenty of time for all the good things in life. Marvellous.
It’s so much easier to work on yourself when you have the time. Recently I’ve been working in the city and I’ve had my hours increased and I have to admit that I’ve struggled to find that work/life balance that everyone goes on about all the time. Today I am writing a post for myself and for anyone else who is struggling to take care of themselves while working hard to pay the bills.
Working Towards a Happier, Healthier You
- Schedule in time just for you
You know your working hours but what about your personal hours? Are they set in stone? Our home lives: washing up, cleaning, cooking dinner, taking care of the pets, spending time with the family, generally take up every moment of our spare time, but that’s not good. You need to have some personal time to do something just for you each day, even if it’s only half an hour. Spend this time doing something good for yourself, something that your future self will thank you for. You may need to juggle your diary a little to find this time and it might mean getting up earlier or removing something from your life that isn’t essential or necessarily beneficial for you.
- Don’t forget to exercise
I struggle to motivate myself to get moving once I sit down, but when I do I feel so much better for it. Now I’m commuting and working I’m really having a hard time to exercise after getting in at 7pm, cooking dinner and washing up. This has to change! I’ve decided to work in a workout (ballet yoga) three times a week for just half an hour at a time. The time I’ve picked is a time when my daughter and G are both out and I will have the house to myself. My alarm is set on my phone, wish me luck.
- Release the tension
I write for a living and it’s a hobby of mine but I also write for my own mental health. I do have a hard time expressing my feelings outwardly and as a result I find myself getting unnecessarily stressed and tense, I particularly feel it in my shoulders and it also shows itself as anxiety. It’s important to let go of stress and I use writing to release all that’s eating me up inside. Writing lets me get things out in a way that won’t cause tension with anyone else. It also helps me to process information and decide if the subject matter needs to be discussed or if it’s something I can work through on my own. Use your own preferred method of releasing tension and give yourself the time and space to let go of things. I’ve also heard sex is great for tension release, just in case you need an excuse…
- Focus on what makes you happy
So much time is spent doing things for so many different reasons other than just for your own happiness. We do things for our survival, for other people or because they are expected of us. I truly believe it is important to have some form of hobby that you only do because it brings personal joy. I love to sing to tunes in the house, play games (cannot wait for Fallout 4!), muck about on a sewing machine, or just indulge in a marathon of my favourite TV Shows (about to start watching Northern Exposure for the millionth time). Since working outside the home I’ve found myself sitting in front of the television watching any old rubbish rather than doing something more productive with my time. Whatever it is that makes you happy, do it.
- Maintaining Good Eating and Sleeping Habits
I get into such bad habits with my sleep pattern and my eating too. I am a natural night owl but you can’t stay up till the early hours and then expect to be full of energy at work the next morning, at least I can’t. I need to stick to a good routine but it’s hard as G works nights and doesn’t get home until just before or just after midnight. Sadly, I think it’s come to the point where I’m going to have to stop waiting up for him and put myself to bed instead.
As for food, hating cooking is something that does not help but I know junk food is going to be killing me. I need to find some quick and easy, healthy alternatives to the foods I love to eat and get more natural sources of vitamins and minerals.
Do you have any advice to share to improve the work – life balance? I’d love to hear your tips. Leave a comment below or visit me on Twitter (@ReclusiveFox) and let me know.