Written by Nick Kershaw, Prime Strategies Business Consultant

Achieving work-life balance & satisfaction

Obviously most people want to achieve both a successful career and a wonderful personal life simultaneously, but this so difficult for many of us. Why? I think we spend far too much time planning and executing our career paths, and neglect to apply the same planning and execution in our personal lives.

We are quick to analyse our work environments and job opportunities with a view to progressing our careers. Yet we are slow to recognise, or even oblivious to, the importance of our personal circumstances and the needs of those around us. We covet the income and benefits of our employment and are quick to abandon our own needs for the good of the business/employer – and frankly, this is just not healthy or sustainable.

I challenge you to change this mentality

Put your personal and family’s health and happiness first.

Even if you are self employed; in fact especially if you are self employed! Your business likely will not function well without you, so make sure your foundations are solid. Put a plan in place to ensure that you are healthy, you are grounded and involved with your family and support people, you have friends inside and outside of work, you have hobbies and interests that take your mind to challenging places outside of work, you have people around you that you love and that love you for your presence and participation in their lives.

You are not at your best at work if your personal life is in turmoil or non-existent.

How can you balance a demanding job with a healthy home life?

It starts with boundaries. Allow work to absorb your attention for the agreed work hours, but don’t let it follow you home and interrupt your time. Be present for your family and enjoy the personal time. Mare time for your passions. Keep your attention focused on whats in front of you, and don’t let your mind drift back to work issues.

Your employer doesn’t own you, and you are not doing them a service by dedicating your life to them.

Will taking this path negatively effect your career?

Let me ask you this. Do you define happiness and success by how high you climb – or the fun and enjoyment you have getting there? Will you be remembered for the height of your success – or by the influence you had on the people around you? Do you believe that total dedication is the only way to get to the top? It’s my belief that a well rounded, happy, fulfilled employee/ manager/ business owner is a much bigger asset than a single minded career climber.

Don’t be a ticking time bomb. Pay close attention to your own needs, your family and your quality of life. Create and hold a vision of what you want your life to look like, designing it and fostering it, and I have no doubt that you will achieve it.