Fixing your work-life balance in 2016

Posted on December 12, 2015 by ATB Chartered Accountants

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that many business owners work more than the average 9-to-5. While this may appear to be beneficial in the short term, working too hard is an inefficient way of running your business. Despite the health impacts of overworking, with stress leading to issues such as high blood pressure and heart problems, in a business sense it also suppresses creativity and ruins motivation. In order to avoid these problems in 2016, it is important for both employees and employers to fix their work-life balance. There are a number of steps that can be taken in order to work towards this.

DON’T FORCE CREATIVITY

There have been numerous scientific studies conducted in the past which indicate that the parts of our brain which have creative capacities usually work better when our attention is elsewhere, and in particular, when we are feeling relaxed or tired. Instead of wasting time overthinking how to make something creative, it is better to think about it for a little while, however, move on to something else once you begin to struggle.

ARE YOU A MORNING OR NIGHT PERSON?

Do you personally work better during the morning, or later in the evening? This is important to acknowledge in order to work your schedule around more efficiently. If you find that you are more productive early in the mornings, it is better to do your most challenging work at this time, as it is considered you are at your mental peak.

SCHEDULE YOUR DAY SENSIBLY

The afternoon slump is common amongst employers and employees. From between 2pm-4pm, you may find you are unable to concentrate on more challenging tasks and you may even be feeling fatigued. During this time you should avoid challenging tasks and instead focus on simpler tasks or admin work to ensure you are remaining productive.

If you want your business to succeed, hard work is unavoidable. There will be times where you will need to put in extra hours to meet a deadline, however this shouldn’t happen all the time.

FINDING YOUR WORK-LIFE BALANCE
Delegation

In order to be successful in business, it is important to be able to delegate tasks to employees and focus on management. If you are unable to delegate work, it is important to make a conscious effort to avoid micromanaging your employees.

Holidays

It is important for both you and your employees to take all your holiday time. It is important that you take a break from time to time in order for you to feel refreshed, and this will show in your business.

Health

Make sure you are putting your personal health first. This means eat well, stay active, avoid stimulants and get enough sleep. Through maintaining your psychical health, it will be easier for your mind to cope with work related pressure. As well as this, ensure you are getting medical checks regularly. It is not uncommon for individuals to be blind to their own stress symptoms even though they are glaringly obvious to other people. These check-ups are simple ways of telling whether or not you need to lower your workload.

Switch off

At the end of the day, you need to know how you can switch off. This means, avoid as much as possible, the urge you feel to check your emails or log into your work systems in your own time.

This year, remember why you started your business in the first place. Was it for more independence? Money? A challenge? Or was it so that you would have control over your hours to spend more time with your family? These goals should be at the forefront of your mind at all times in order to remind yourself that your work is not everything, and to give some perspective. Your work-life balance dictates your business success. Overworking yourself will negatively impact yourself in both a business sense and in your personal life, and so, it is beneficial to ensure you get this balance right.