While working all hours may seem a sure-fire way to build the career of your dreams; more often than not, neglecting your life outside of work is the start of the slippery slope to office burnout.
Of course, you drink endless cups of coffee to keep concentration on your computer screen- but is it hiding a bigger problem? Sometimes, it’s time to step back and start thinking about working more productively in realistic timeframes. Britons tend to work some of the longest hours in Europe and yet, alarmingly, we are around 20% less productive than the G7 average.
So, take a deep breath and follow our top tips to successfully walk the tightrope that is the work-life balance.
Sleep deprivating links to a range of ailments, including type 2 diabetes, heart attacks, strokes, and even obesity. Not to mention the fact that it makes you irritable and less productive than if you had just quickly demolished a bottle of pinot. For a more productive day, you need to reclaim a proper night’s sleep.
Like the rest of your day, the key to a good night’s sleep is routine. So that means no more ‘catching up’ on the weekend; try and stick to the same routine every morning to regulate your body clock. Remember, that blissful period between leaving work and going to sleep is your time to wind down…so make the most of it!
- Chase Your Emails, Don’t Let Them Chase You
Having your work emails pop up on your smartphone may seem convenient- but it can hinder productivity. By immediately responding to emails, you allow them to become a distraction. Set your emails to retrieve when you say so, not to appear in your inbox as soon as they are sent. If you’re desperate to check your emails on an evening, this means that you can do so without detracting from the rest of your night.
- Take a Weekly Tech Detox
First of all, refer to tip 2.
Technology has made our lives easier in so many ways, but it has taken away our ability to ‘switch off’. One night a week, switch off your laptop, tablet, smartphone and TV…and enjoy the peace and quiet! Here in the UK, we spend an average 1 hour 20 minutes on social media every day and, when we think of the little time we actually spend in our own homes, is a staggering proportion of our out-of-office life to dedicate to technology!
- Don’t Be a Control Freak
If you find yourself frequently saying, “If you want something doing right, do it yourself!” Then it may be time to take a step back.
Knowing when to delegate is one of the stepping stones to career success. Take a step back, re-evaluate how well you are working within your team and see if it’s time for a reshuffle.
- Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For a Little Bit of Flexibility
Life doesn’t stop during the regular 9-5; sometimes you need to add other commitments into the mix. Ask your boss to commit to flexible working, or see if you can work from home one day a week. Remember, work smarter hours, not longer hours.
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