By Sweta Srivastava
When it comes to work, we all struggle to maintain a balance between professional and personal life. When choosing between work and family responsibilities, often it is the work that wins. Most of the professionals feel guilty for not spending enough time with their families and working even after reaching home.
I completely understand the challenge. I have had days when I would get so engrossed with my work that I would often forget about other important things happening in my personal life. I also started experiencing anxiety and mood swings. However, I realised it soon that it had to stop, especially when it began to affect my health and personal life. I understood that it is essential to have a balance in life to be happier and healthier. Regardless of our age or our circumstances, we all need experiences apart from work.
As a team leader, you can take this opportunity to help your employees and team in maintaining this balance and shape their behaviour in a more meaningful manner. The real challenge is how to encourage your employees when you are struggling with the same things yourself.
In case you are wondering about how you can accomplish that, we are here, listing down some strategies you can consider to motivate and encourage your employees and to get you started.
Define and Respect the Boundaries
Identifying your priorities and setting up a limit can help you in managing professional and personal needs. You need to figure out the amount of work you need to finish in a day and the time and attention you need to give to your family responsibilities. Once you have figured this out, it will be easier for you to prioritise and manage your time accordingly. I feel immense respect whenever I meet people who have their priorities set clearly. It amazes me how they know when they need to focus on work and when to take time off.
Even if you are struggling with setting up boundaries for yourself, you need to learn to be considerate towards the family duties of your employees and set up limits for them as well.
As a manager, you need to understand that it is all right if a report is completed and presented in the evening instead of morning. People can fall sick or can have family responsibilities and need to take care of their family members or sometimes, need some time off from work, to decompress. It would be best if you respect your boundaries as well as theirs.
Achieving Goals is “Not a Sprint But a Marathon”
There will always be something at work which is time bound and time sensitive. While specific job requires more commitment in less time, it should not become your workplace culture. Often, creativity strikes when you take a break and let your mind wander. Doing things the smart way is what you need instead of burning out yourself. Be more realistic when setting up your goals.
Maintain constant communication with your team and remind them to take a break and de-stress. Sometimes slowing down reap more significant benefits in the long run. It will give you a more dynamic team of professionals and will help you build a better relationship with your team as well.
Go Digital to Manage Workload
Using technology to manage some of your tasks will save much of your time. You can utilise time and energy to do other important things that require more of your attention.
I use applications to set reminders and daily tasks and even to remind me to take a sip of water between work. They help me to keep track of my personal and professional responsibilities as well as connecting with my colleagues and superiors. It provides me as well as to them some flexibility at work.
However, remember not to overdo it and learn to switch them off as well. Do not use technology to expand working hours for you or those working for you.
Nurture Your Creativity
I often go for art jamming sessions, cafe hopping or just read a book whenever I feel the need to take a break from my daily routine. It helps me in slowing down and give my mind more clarity. Develop new hobbies or follow the old ones. Give time to what you love doing the most. You will be energised and more refreshed. It will nurture your creativity and will help you think out of the box.
As a manager or leader, you can guide your team and encourage them to follow their hobbies as well. You can have team bonding sessions like going for trekking together on the weekend or just booking a tour to some vineyard or an art jamming session for your team. Team activities will help in strengthening your relationship with your team and also will help to de-stress.
Health & Wellness
We all know the importance of a healthy lifestyle and exercise. I practise yoga to keep my body fit and my mind more focused and calm. When your mind is more composed and relaxed, you can make better decisions and prioritise things more efficiently. Meditation is equally important as physical exercise.
As a leader, you can organise runs for your employees or book a session of yoga for all your team members. Encourage them to be more healthy and take care of themselves. You can also motivate and engage them through daily health challenges or health tips to spread health awareness.
We understand the importance of maintaining a work-life balance, and we also understand that there may be days when you and your team will need to give specific work projects more of time and attention than personal life. However, the problem occurs when it becomes a part of your company culture and begin making your work environment toxic. By setting up boundaries from the very beginning, you can bring both work and life to a perfect balance. Try to include the suggestions mentioned above to prevent burnout on yourself and your team and notice the change in performance and productivity rate in the long run.