Over the course of the past five years, I have not had a single day without a discussion about balancing obligations at home and work. No matter who I talk to, the subject comes up in conversation. My friends want to find a way to have successful businesses or thriving careers and at the same time have happy, well-adjusted home lives. There are many different ways to find a way to balance it all, to keep all the balls flying through the air without crashing down. One way is to know what your happy place is at work and at home.
Spoiler alert – there is a video summary of this article at the bottom of the page.
Work has to be done. It doesn’t matter if you are a stay-at-home mom of six or a Fortune 500 CEO, the old saying is true – a man works from sun to sun, but a woman’s work is never done. If you are a person who works from your home, there are three things to keep in mind if you want to win at the work-home balancing act. These three things are:
Work and home are two different places. Each place has its own rules, regulations, policies, and procedures. In order to balance things, it is important to treat home and work as two separate places. Even if you work from your home, make a special and separate work area. Do not make your living room chair mixed with the children’s homework, your knitting, and the mail for the day. If you must work at home, create a special work area.
Even if it is the living room, make a special work area. Even in a small space, you can devote a storage box, tote bag, and chair just for work purposes. If you have space, turn the side of a room, indoor porch, or convert an unused room. When you go to work, get up, and actually walk to your work area. By the same token, when it is time for home, get out of your work area, put your work materials down, and actually live your life. GO to your home area and look at your children’s schoolwork. Pick up your knitting and finish those socks. Go through the mail and complain about all the bills in the pile.
Most times when people talk about enjoyment when it comes to work and home, they are talking about home. However, if we are going to be honest, we must admit that work is enjoyable also. At work, there is enjoyment to be found in doing a job well, meeting professional expectations, and earning money for one’s work. It is easier to balance work and home when you acknowledge that there is enjoyment to be found at work as well as at home. Granted, the enjoyment each place provides and supplies is different. That difference does not make the enjoyment of one better or more important than the other.
One of the best things you can do to balance work and home is to be fully present at work when you are at work and fully present at home when you are at home. While you are at work, do not handle personal business. Even if you work at home, respect your work hours, behave as a professional, and devote your mind and efforts to work-related tasks. Similarly, when you are at home, do not do work activities. Do not spend your home hours or home time taking care of leftover tasks from work. Instead, be present and enjoy the time you have at home. Pay attention to your children, your spouse, and yourself. During home time, do things that you enjoy personally, that are not direct work tasks. Use your personal time to enjoy life and appreciate that the time you spent at work makes it possible to have a home and home time to enjoy.
It is fantastic to balance work and home when you know your happy place. So the question for you on this fantastic day is, do you know your happy place at work and home?
[embedplusvideo height=”421″ width=”750″ editlink=”http://bit.ly/2SaMMkN” standard=”http://www.youtube.com/v/G0YtbaN_xxA?fs=1″ vars=”ytid=G0YtbaN_xxA&width=750&height=421&start=&stop=&rs=w&hd=0&autoplay=0&react=1&chapters=¬es=” id=”ep9861″ /]
Click here to download a copy of our 3 part Creating Confidence Checklist.