54 per cent of women start a business so they can
choose what hours they work.
Sound familiar? You dream of the ideal work life balance – running a successful, profitable business that allows you to fulfill your career dreams, while having plenty of time for family, relationships, fun, health, balance and the ultimate no-stress job.
What does the reality look like for you? You hear about work life balance frequently. You know you are supposed to aim for it and you know itâ€™s within your control to make it happen. But it can be elusive.
The percentage of businesses owned by women is on the increase and not only are women starting up new business, but they are staying in business.
The reality for many of these women, however, is that running a successful business is just one of the many roles they play and the desire to be successful in business and in life can lead to overwhelm.
So how do you achieve work life balance?
How do you manage stress without compromising on other aspects of your busy life?
These are big questions and there are myriad solutions out there to address work life balance and stress reduction. Some women believe balance in work and life is a myth, some spend most of their lives striving to achieve it and others choose to simply â€˜get on with itâ€™. The prospect of addressing work life balance, or managing stress can in itself feel overwhelming and stop us from taking the time to discover how we can balance all the different parts of our lives.
Why not simplify things and focus in on THIS WEEK only?
Rather than thinking you need to address this problem once and for all, aim to look at the week coming up and how you can achieve great work life balance for this week.
Here are 5 easy steps to help you achieve perspective and relieve stress:
- Look at the week ahead and list everything that you are trying to get done. Donâ€™t think too hard about what is and isnâ€™t coming up for you, just let it flow. Include whatever presents itself: work tasks, family, relationships, social outings, personal admin, maintaining hour home, health and well-being, sleep, etc. Be prepared to be surprised when you look over your list!
- Read through your list and circle the things you are not prepared to let go of.
- Look at what is left (not circled) and think through each item individually. Perhaps you can let go of it completely for this week. Maybe you would like to modify your expectations of yourself in that area or re-define the task and circle it. Reaffirm that it feels ok to leave these non-circled items aside for this week.
- Examine the circled items and prioritize them, then define your targets or goals within each area.
- Plan your week by first setting aside time for the items at the top of your priority list and move through until you have scheduled in all the circled tasks.
Does it still feel like too much to fit into one week? If so, repeat the exercise again from step 2 using the â€˜priorityâ€™ list of circled items you have created. Dig a little deeper and ask yourself which ones you may be able to let go of, modify or simplify so that you can have a healthy and balanced week!
As you get on with your week, notice and reflect on your stress and anxiety levels. Close your week with a check-in, reflecting on how successfully you have created work life balance, what worked for you, what didnâ€™t and how you are going to approach it next week!
Share your observations!
As a community of women who can support each other, we would love to hear what you have observed after reading this or working through the steps. What have you let go of or modified? Other readers will undoubtedly learn from your experiences!