Friday, 16 March 2018

What is the Perfect Work/Life Balance?

Is a perfect 50/50 work life balance even a thing?! I mean, I can only dream of getting up early, applying perfect make-up and *actually* brushing my hair, getting to work on time, having a productive day in the office, fitting in a gym session, writing my blog, having an active social life, tucking into some rolled oats topped with chia jam and homemade almond butter (or whatever else Instagram tells me I should be eating) cleanse, tone and moisturise, and THEN getting a full 8 hours sleep every night. But let’s face it. That NEVER happens.

Especially working in social media, I find it extremely difficult to switch off. I am ALWAYS on my phone. Scanning through my client social accounts, and my own, alternating between Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Facebook until my brain finally tells me I need to sleep. (But not until I’ve done that thing where you calculate how much sleep you can cram in before your alarm goes off if you fall asleep as soon as you close your eyes.)

This isn’t a post to tell you exactly how to get the perfect work/life balance, but I’m going to share some changes that I am actively going to make, to help me minimise stress (!!!!!!!!!) and enjoy both sides a little bit more.

  1. Switch off. Ok, so I’ve started with the toughest one, but I‘m going to limit checking my work phone to once or twice a day on weekends, and once in the evenings. And I’m going to TRY and limit checking my personal phone at LEAST 25%- see how well (or terribly) I do and try and increase it a little more as I go on. I DO NOT NEED TO CHEK INSTAGRAM RELIGIOUSLY. When I’m watching a film or something on Netflix- why do I need to check people’s stories? Why do I need to scroll through images I saw 5 seconds ago? I feel like I just do it out of habit, which is stupid really, especially because the stupid algorithm means I rarely even see my own friends posts anyway. So in reality I’m spending hours of my precious looking at strangers holiday photos. Brilliant.

  1. Be sensible. Lol at me using the word sensible by the way. I try so hard to limit drinking during the week, which is pretty hard when a lot of my working week social life revolves around going for dinner or drinks. I’m not going to lie- I LOVE a drink, but let’s be honest ‘one drink’ is never one drink. Fast forward 4 hours, it’s 1am, I’m absolutely para, and my alarm is due to go off in 6 hours. By itself it doesn’t sound too bad, but when I’m going to spend the whole day at my desk absolutely hanging and having the productivity level of roadkill, it ain’t good. Plus, it means as soon as the clock hits 5:30 I’m sprinting out the door to spend the evening in bed with a ready meal. Not. Good.

  1. Break away from my desk. Being a blogger, freelancing, and having a desk job means that from 9:30-5:30, I’m pretty much glued to my chair, and it can be pretty stifling especially when I’m a creative. Recently I’ve been using my lunch break to go for a walk (usually to the post office to return something to ASOS or Topshop but w/e) and it has helped massively! My mood, my energy, my creativity, everything. Would definitely recommend!

  1. Work out. Since coming back from Australia I haven’t been to the gym once. I could make up a thousand excuses as to why here, but I would be kidding myself- I’ve just been lazy. It’s one thing dragging yourself to the gym, but do you ever regret a workout? Never. And you always feel SO good afterwards. It also has a knock-on effect with my eating habits too- I always eat better when I’m working out. Ok that’s it I’m joining Monday.

  1. Group Chats. I am part of quite a few group chats with my friends, and 99% of the time they are absolutely going OFF. It’s sooo easy to get caught up in a chat and spend the rest of the day checking it to keep up with the goss/ losing my entire trail of thought. To get over this I don’t open my group chats at ALL. Until I finish work. When I first implemented this rule with myself I checked it at lunchtime and replied to any messaged then, but now I don’t even bother until I’m on my commute home, and I haven’t even missed it! (Soz pals- your chat is fire but gals got stuff to do)

  1. Plan my weekends. I never want to get stuck in the rut of being super sensible all week, and then getting to Sunday night and thinking ‘ugh what a boring weekend.’ So, I aaaaalways make sure I’ve got really good plans for the weekend. Yeah, I still have times where I just fancy a night in, but for me, a good weekend involves my friends, drinks, and usually some form of outrageous behaviour. Usually from me.

  1. Never settle. As you will know from my post about quitting my job, I am not a girl who settles! If you’re unhappy in your job- do something about it! You spend the majority of your time at work, so you have to do something you enjoy. I’m not saying I leap out of bed every morning when my alarm goes off absolutely buzzing to get to the office, but I enjoy my role, I love the industry and I LOVE my colleagues. Plus, you’re never going to get close to a decent work/life balance if you hate your job. 

How do you split your time between work and personal life? Share your tips with me on Twitter here!

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