The Dos and Don’ts of Work Life Balance

Posted by on Apr 5, 2013 in Work-life Balance | 17 comments

When I tell people I write about work-life balance the response I get most often is, “I need some of that!” Don’t we all?

The problem is we tend to think of work-life balance as a destination we hope to arrive at one day but like most of the things we want in life (happiness, love, success) work-life balance is a way of living, not a badge received at the end of the race.

Work-life balance is all about balancing your body, mind, and heart. It’s not about how much time you spend but how you spend your time. You don’t have to be perfect to enjoy balance in your life- just do what you can.

You can start today by discovering small ways to create a life that is more balanced, and then all you have to do is keep it up! Some days this will be easier than others, and that’s okay. Keep trying. Keep practicing. This is a life well-lived in the making and you do it every day.

Okay, so how do you do it every day? I’ve got some ideas about that.

work-life balancePhoto credit: Copyright (c) 123RF Stock Photos

The Dos & Don’ts of Work-Life Balance

Do

create balance in your life every day.

Don’t

make excuses for putting balance at the bottom of your priority list!

Do

enjoy at least 15 minutes of “me time” each day.

Don’t

skip taking breaks at work. You’ll be more productive if you take breaks, I swear!

Do

stay hydrated and eat good food.

Don’t

gorge yourself on junk food. A little is okay in my book- remember balance is the goal!

Do

take naps. Naps are a great way to recharge.

Don’t

stay up too late arguing politics on Facebook, or indulging any of your other internet vices! 😉

Do

declutter your digital life. Get rid of the things that aren’t adding value to your life.

Don’t

plop yourself down on the couch and channel surf. Enjoy shows and movies you love and then get up off the couch and do something else!

Do

get some exercise! Exercise comes in many forms- walking the dog, housecleaning, biking, running, yoga, or everyone’s favorite activity- going to the gym.

Don’t

push yourself beyond your limits. Find your limit and stretch into it instead of just recklessly pushing beyond it.

Do

spend time with people you love.

Don’t

let your dislike of other people get you down.

Do

have fun every day! Life is as fun as you make it!

Don’t

forget to smile! A smile a day keeps stress at bay.

Do

check one item off your to-do list.

Don’t

expect yourself to do it all.

Do

say no when you need to.

Don’t

feel guilty about saying no.

Do

let go. Let go of your worries. Let go of your fears. Let go of your judgements. Just let go.

Don’t

take on other people’s attitudes, emotions, or actions. If it doesn’t belong to you there’s nothing you can do about it, anyway!

Do

accept yourself as the beautifully imperfect individual you are today. All you can do today is the best you can, where you are right now.

Don’t

put yourself down for making mistakes. Mistakes are okay!

Do

be kind to yourself and others.

Don’t

complain. Complaining is bad for your soul, and probably your complexion, too.

Do

love! Love yourself! Love others! Love your life! YEAH!

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I love your comments! What other dos and don’ts do you have to share?

17 Comments

  1. What great suggestions Chrysta for balancing our lives.

    For the most part I do pretty good but I know that there can always be room for improvement.

    I shared something with my subscribers today so here is something to think about. Today is the youngest you’ll ever be for the rest of your life so how do you want to live it from this moment forward. Your suggestions are definitely great tips for just that my friend.

    Thanks for sharing those and you have a wonderful week.

    ~Adrienne

    • Thanks for your awesome comment, Adrienne!

      “Today is the youngest you’ll ever be for the rest of your life so how do you want to live it from this moment forward.”

      I LOVE this! Thanks so much for sharing it!

      Instead of thinking I have room for improvement, today I’m going to think I have room for adjustment. I prefer “adjustment” because it has fewer connotations.

      Thank you so much for stopping by! Have a simply fantastic day!

      Chrysta

  2. Great list, Chrysta! Pretty comprehensive. I especially like the ones on acceptance and not complaining. With acceptance, we start with ourselves first. Once we learn to be kinder to ourselves, our view on others softens as well, and we become more aware of variations in behavior, rather than hard-and-fast right/wrong action. With complaining, it just feeds negativity and drains us. Same goes for gossiping. If we can’t say something to someone’s face, it’s gossip – that’s the litmus test I’d like to use. Thank you for this great post!

    • Thanks for your awesome comment, Alice!

      I love how you described acceptance. I do not view acceptance as approving, but merely seeing people, places, and things for what they are- uncolored by my feelings and judgements. When I remove emotionally-charged associations then I become kinder and my attitude softens, as you described.

      I absolutely agree that gossip is just as harmful as complaining- thanks for elaborating on that idea! I consider gossip to be anything that isn’t about me- even if it’s good news! If it’s not my story to tell well then it’s probably gossip and may damage my reputation and relationships.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts! Have a grateful day!

      Chrysta

  3. Hi Chrysta,

    This was a great list of dos & don’ts to maintain a work-life balance.

    One more I would like to add is to do work that we are passionate about. It will make us feel alive and bring out the best in us.

    Thank you.

    • Thanks for the awesome comment, Hiten!

      I love your suggestion to do work we are passionate about- work we love hardly feels like work at all and it gives us energy!

      Thanks for your wonderful addition to the list! Have a grateful day!

      Chrysta

  4. Chrysta –

    Fantastic list! I found my self nodding with you the whole way through! One that I would add is to truly take a vacation… allow yourself to unplug from the day-to-day, reconnect with yourself and your family / friends. Feels hard sometimes but very much worth it!

    Thanks for this ~ I know I can do better with a few of the Do’s & Don’ts myself!

    ~ Alli

    • Thanks for your awesome comment, Alli!

      I love your suggestion to take a vacation and unplug!

      Last year I learned just how important it is to take a relaxing vacation. My husband and I enjoy spending a long weekend at a cabin in the mountains for our anniversary. Last year we decided to skip our annual trip due to veterinary bills for our terminally ill dog. Later in the year I became aware of an intense desire to take the trip anyway and realized what a huge benefit it is in our lives. We are not skipping the trip this year! :)

      Have a grateful day!

      Chrysta

  5. Hi Chrysta,

    Great points of things to do and not do. It is important to take stock of what works for us and what we need to do differently and then do it. So, the add would be “Do take a step back to ensure you are taking the right steps forward.”

    Thanks. Great stuff!

    Jon

    • Thanks for your awesome comment, Jon!

      I love your suggestion to pause every once in a while and reassess our situation. I have found my life path does not follow a straight line. When I keep heading straight I often find myself on the wrong path and cause unnecessary suffering as a result. Checking my progress, my goals, and what is and isn’t working helps me adjust my path and stay on track!

      Have a grateful day!

      Chrysta

  6. Well hello Chrysta

    I love your tip “accept yourself as the beautifully imperfect individual you are today. All you can do today is the best you can, where you are right now.”

    This all too often forms the basis that sets off the other negative thought traits that you highlight in this post.

    As you say there is only so much we can do and we need to either live with that or figure out a better way to accomplish more.

    • Thanks for your awesome comment!

      In my own life learning to accept, even embrace, myself as I am today has been crucial to my health, happiness, and success. Of course I strive to grow and achieve but I can’t accomplish this without recognizing and appreciating my skills, talents, and my limitations.

      Thanks for sharing your perspective. As you noted, not accepting ourselves is often the basis for negative thoughts and behaviors.

      Have a grateful day!

      Chrysta

  7. I think I’ve realised I’ve got to stop expecting perfect balance every day and aim for balance over the longer term, you know? I think for me the digital addiction is the WORST, given I both work and play online!

    • Thanks for your awesome comment!

      I absolutely agree no one can achieve perfect balance every day! Some days we’ll give more of ourselves and another day we’ll take more to rejuvenate- whatever that looks like to each of us. Trying to add a little balance here and there is often all it takes to create balance over the long term.

      And YES to digital addiction!! I’m guilty of mindlessly wasting time online in a way that is not really valuable to me. I suppose sometimes it’s okay to mindless waste time but I know sometimes I take it a bit too far- like getting to bed late because I stayed up pinning on Pinterest or watching stupid videos on YouTube- boo to that! 😉

      Have a grateful day!

      Chrysta
      Chrysta

  8. Ah, I always feel so re-energized and hopefull after reading your posts! Love this do`s and don`ts!:-)
    Have a great weekend!

    • Thanks for your awesome comment, girl! Your comments keep me motivated to keep writing! :)

      Be awesome!

      Chrysta

  9. Hi Chrysta

    Great list of do’s and don’t’s. I think we get to just go about living and not realize how much we need to take a break from all the frustrations in life. Even though I am no longer working at a negative job anymore, I still find I get to involved of what I need to do moving forward. I need to just back off once in awhile and enjoy life a little more.

    Mary

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