Does Slowing-down actually helps?
Now one may ask if you have so much to do, your work, your focus, your family, your life, how can you take a step back, a pause to examine and audit your time, your work-life balance. This almost sounds like a foolish advice. Afterall you have always learnt that if you snooze you lose. You really have no time for slowing down, and what if you decide to take the step back and miss the bus?
Benefits of regular life appraisals:
While all of these thoughts are relevant, on the other hand, often giving a pause once in a while to examine your life, to look at what went well, what worked, and what did not work and what is your learning from it, is what can make you smarter, sharper and more focused in life. I am sure you are used to the annual, half-yearly or quarterly appraisals at work, and more so because it is mandatory and mostly tied to a reward. Use the same principle to review your life, monthly perhaps. This reward system is based on science and has been proved to work times over.
Our Fear System:
While the reward system often works, we also have an inbuilt fear system holding us back. What if we fail, what if we lose our job, what if I cannot pay my house EMI.. and this what if list gets longer and longer. All it does is overwhelm us and stress us up. Many times it is ok to make mistakes and even beneficial if one looks back. It offers the best learning path, however hard it may seem at that point. Besides, only if you are willing to take risks and make mistakes will you grow.
Coming back to auditing your life, I use a sort of 360 degree audit tool, which includes my personal life and what I am doing about my physical, mental health and wellness like my healthy eating habits, the water I drink, my stress level, time for relaxation and hobbies, my family and children time, my professional goals and ambitions. Slowing down once in a while and taking some time to audit our life, makes us more aware. It give us space to focus on our time management and prioritizing skills. And it helps us reduce stress and manage better work-life balance. The result, it adds confidence back into our life, and the belief that ‘I can do it’ which is a great booster to ace the professional and personal life.
From Overwhelm to Balance:
I try and distribute my time in all these spheres and not stretch myself, as it is not worth the stress and mental and physical fatigue, since it is always one at the cost of the other. I use a planner, slotting my ‘to-do’ list in order of priority. Some are important and cannot be avoided like dropping kids to school, ordering provision for the house. Some are urgent like the office budget that needs to get done by end of the week. Some can wait and depends if I have the time and energy, like the needlework I wanted to do at some point. This planning removes the feel of overwhelm as each day begins. I feel if one learns to choose and stay focused and disciplined, prioritizing our well-being, it makes us more confident as a person, where happiness, wealth and success will follow.
What does a balanced like look like?
When we are able to learn the art of balancing our professional and personal like, we becomes ofcourse less stressed, but also more happy. We are able to enjoy life, and enjoy the fruits of our hard work, with better health. Stress leads to life style diseases like diabetes, obesity and some cardio issues, to state a few. Just by being able to get a good work-life balance, we can reverse such life style diseases and be more creative, more productive and be able to achieve all our goals that we set to and want to achieve in the first place.
Need more ideas to deal with Stress and work-life balance?
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