Treat Yo' Self to Better Work-​Life Balance

BY Courtney Huckabay
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Work just always creeps into our lives, doesn't it? Even when we try and succeed at disconnecting during the weekend, we still end up thinking about what we have to do Monday on Sunday evening. You didn't do any work, you just thought about it for Pete's sake! But it's that kind of subtle self-​sabotage that can completely derail us and our future productivity and ruin our work-​life balance.

I found a few modern tips for gaining and maintaining work-​life balance that Brit + Co. compiled for Levo. They rounded up real-​life strategies from successful businesspeople you've heard of. I'm sharing three here with you, that focus on the daily nitty-​gritty — not just the Big Idea of Work-​Life Balance.

How to Treat Yo' Self to Better Work-​Life Balance

Treat yo’ self on Mondays.

For me, and probably for most women with high-​stress careers, Mondays are undoubtedly the most hectic day of the week,” says Rosette Pambakian, Tinder’s ‎vice president of communications and branding. “I’ve learned that the best way for me to beat the Monday blues is to give myself something to look forward to, so I take the time to treat myself to my favorite coffee … every single Monday before heading into the office, no matter how busy my morning is.”

I think we can all agree we hate Mondays. So, do whatever little thing you need to do for yourself when Monday starts. Make sure you begin your day with something that makes it a teensy bit less hateful.

Kick up your feet after 6 p.m. — even if you’re still at the office.

Just because you’re staying at the office late doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be able to cut loose after hours. Jennifer Bluemling, co-​founder and CEO of Borrowed by Design, says, “We have a rule in our office that if you stay after 6 p.m., you have the freedom to turn up the music and crack open a beer.”

Cutting loose might not mean drinking alcohol for you. Make it mean something to you, though, and to your teammates. Play a quick board game at 6:00, or work on a puzzle in the break room for 15 minutes, or change into your yoga pants. But also interpret this tip ultra literally. Get home from work by 6:00 and seriously take off your shoes and put your feet up. Or whatever time works best for you and your family. If you have to feed the demanding kids as soon as you walk in the door then do the feet-​up thing at 8:30 when they're in bed. The key is to stay committed to this small, everyday act. You must make it a priority and let your household know not to bother you for 10 minutes (or whatever) at this time every night. Even small breaks can do wonders for your work-​life balance.

Adopt a mantra of asking for help.

I have a 16-​month-​old son. Since he’s been born, it’s been harder to balance work and life because I’ve been afraid to rely on family and childcare professionals,” notes Jocelyn Michels, Yahoo’s senior director of global partnerships. “Recently, I adopted a new mantra: ‘Ask for help.’ Instead of trying to do everything myself, I now ask for help. Finally, I routinely ask advice from working moms who are experienced in balancing work and life.”

Oftentimes the easiest solution is the hardest thing to do. Asking for help is insanely difficult for most of us. But give it a try. It could save your work life and help you feel as if you have more of a work-​life balance.