Working long hours, not having a personal life and dedicating every spare moment to your career may in fact help you get ahead, but at what cost? Few of us want our lives to revolve around a singular issue, and the reality is that we all need to find a balance between work, family and personal time to lead truly happy and fulfilled lives. So how can you work towards making your life more balanced? Here are some ideas:
- Don't wait for the "right time." It is a rare occurrence in life when things just naturally fall into a balance. For most, achieving balance is a conscious act, motivated by a desire to give importance to multiple aspects of our lives. Find a balance now, rather than putting it off to a possibly unlikely future time when you think it will be easier.
- Realize that there is no need to put happiness on hold. Living an unbalanced life is rarely the ticket to happiness but we often tell ourselves that these situations are short lived. Sometimes they are but many, if not most times, they aren't and we simply defer the happiness we could have now by offering false hopes of future happiness. Take charge of your life and your time now and make a change.
- Figure out your priorities. You might put your family and friends at the top of your priorities, but how much time do you really spend with them? Are other aspects of your life taking priority over the things you really value? Figure out where you'd like to dedicate the majority of your time and see if you can come up with ways to match your ambition with your reality.
- Chart how you spend your time. One way to start changing your life balance is to keep track of how much time you dedicate each week to different aspects of your life, including work, family, friends, the community and yourself. Once you know where you stand you can work on changing things if you're not achieving the kind of balance you'd like.
- Focus on experiences, not things. Things can be nice, they can be fun, and they can add comfort to your life, but when it comes down to it they often lose their appeal after a few months or years and you'll simply want to replace them with new things. Spending time with those you care about, sharing experiences and having adventures can sometimes be a way to get more out of the money you make and leave you with a life full of memories rather than things.
- Have a schedule. While it might frighten those who hate planning, schedules can be one way to keep a handle on your life balance. Leaving work at a certain time, scheduling workouts, and writing down dates with a loved one can ensure that you follow through on spending your time wisely.
This post was contributed by Tara Miller, who writes about the online psychology degrees. She welcomes your feedback at TaraMillerr00 at yahoo.com