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Today's professional life is far from a cosy 9 to 5 job. With the office nearly becoming your first home, other areas of your life obviously suffer. The constant battle to keep up with work, family, personal and social commitments or the guilt and pain of sacrificing one or many of these is leading to several stress-related ailments and burn outs amongst corporate go-getters.


Finding a suitable work-life balance is a key to restoring health and happiness in your life. The word 'suitable' is important here because there is no 'one size fits all' balance nor does the word balance means 50:50 here. For every person, priorities, needs and goals differ and hence the idea of a balance is fluid. A generic view of work-life balance would be to seek harmony among different spheres of life while keeping in mind the principle, "Work to live and not live to work".

How you can achieve your work-life balance

A little bit of introspection and a little bit of strategy can help you achieve your desired peace.

Look within and prioritise

Knowing your priorities and your goals is the most powerful instrument for improving the quality of your life. And it relates from knowing what tasks are really important in your 'to do' list today to knowing what are the things you truly seek in life. Understanding your goals and inner calling throws light on things you need to focus on and the things you can let go. This saves your time and energy from being directed to unimportant things; also as you know now that these things do not matter, you no longer suffer from stress / guilt arising out of not doing them. For example: Your name has been deputed for a special project, which will require you to put extra hours next month. But you also know that your father's operation is scheduled next month and you will have to spend time in hospital. Now, if you clearly know being beside your ailing father is your priority, you will not grumble or feel stressed about losing that special project.

Make use of employee wellness facilities

The suggestion, 'leave office on time', is improbable to implement given the current business and work environment. However, many companies are offering wellness facilities to their employees to improve their well-being. These range from on-campus gymnasium, crèche, mediation classes to flexible working hours. If you are anyways spending 10 to 12 hours in office, why not spend half an hour more and use the office gym? Also, make use of the yearly vacation your company allows you to take. A good break will rejuvenate you approach work with more energy and enthusiasm. When switching to a new job, always find out if the prospective employers have employee-friendly policies.

Switch off

Most people often find that they are mentally carrying their office pressures even when they are at home or on vacation. If you have decided to dedicate a certain amount of time to yourself / family make sure you are physically and mentally present in the moment. Learning meditation techniques can help you gain control over your thought process and operate the switch button. Technology too has a key role here. With your blackberry constantly buzzing or your laptop equipped with mobile broadband you are never really far from office. Technology is a double-edged sword; the same communication devices that make functioning easier for you become a bane when you decide to take time off from work. So when on vacation or on the special times you have reserved for yourself clearly communicate to your office that you will be unavailable and switch those gadgets off.

Share responsibilities

Whether at home or at work, delegate the tasks that don't require your involvement and can be done by others. It could be as simple as asking your children to fold and arrange dried clothes to asking your colleague to work on a presentation. The attempt to be 'superhuman' actually takes you nowhere except for the depths of frustration and exhaustion. Before going on a vacation, plan and delegate future work so that you are not bothered constantly or you don't have to cut short your vacation.

Life indeed has become complicated, but if you observe carefully a lot of complications are self-created and are arising out of false ego and lack of clarity about your priorities. Professional accomplishments and money are indeed important, but to lead a healthy and wholesome life, physical, mental and emotional well-being are equally important. According to his / her needs every person can definitely find his own work-life balance within this periphery.


Health Initiative from KS Oils