Often when you’re so driven and ambitious and when you enjoy your work, it can be difficult to switch off. However, if you’re not careful your dedicated worth ethic can tip you off balance, leaving you feeling like you never have a break and actually stop you performing at the top of your game. So here are some tips to help you balance being super successful with a fruitful social life.
Leave your laptop at work
Regularly bringing your laptop home can become a draining habit. It can also be an easy excuse to procrastinate during the day, thinking you’ll just do it when you get home. If you’ve got something to finish then try staying a little bit later at the office, as you’re more likely to work more efficiently in that extra hour than working from home all evening. Not having your laptop physically at home (or putting it away and consciously refusing to get it) will also mean you’re not tempted to log in, just in case.
Set yourself a curfew
Impose some self-discipline and ensure that you switch off your mobile and laptop at a certain time, irrelevant of whether you’ve finished or not. Get up a little earlier in the morning if you really have to finish something as you’ll be more focused after a good sleep and get the job done much quicker.
Turn off email alerts
Just because you receive an email at 10pm doesn’t mean that you have to respond. Turning off alerts will mean that you won’t be disrupted throughout your evening, or tempted to join the addictive late night email threads. Responding only in office hours will also help discourage others from contacting you at unsociable hours, which is a positive for both you and your colleagues!
Have a dedicated space
If you work from home and don’t have the luxury of an office then make sure once you finish at the end of the day you put all your things away. Replace your laptop with candles in the evening to immediately change the ambience and help make your bedroom that sacred space for relaxation, once again. If you need extra help with this, check out our article on sticking to a schedule when you work from home.
Write your action list at the end of the day
Before you finish for the day, clear off everything you’ve done that day and then commit yourself to 3 key actions for the following day. Doing it at the end of the day will stop you from worrying about what is left to be done as it gives you a clear action plan for the next day. This will also mean you’re not stressing the next morning and you’ll be raring to go as soon as you arrive at the office.
Mix up your routine
If you’ve had a particularly difficult day, most of the time you’ll probably just want to go home and crash. However try raising your energy levels by not going directly home and creating a gap in your routine. Try a different commute, walk part of the journey home or go chill in your favourite coffee shop and listen to a podcast or read a non-work related book. Any of these will help you to release tension before you arrive home and allow you to enjoy your evening.
Use a journal
If you find yourself regularly worrying about work at night or over the weekends, then try using a journal to record your thoughts. This can be a great way to release frustration and help you gain some perspective. It can also give you space to reflect and work out ways in which you may be able to change things at work to help reduce some of the worry. Here’s why writing a personal diary could change your life.
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Written by Hayley Wintermantle.