Finding balance: Life is as important as work

Productivity isn’t about how much work you do
If you’re worrying about work, and how to juggle everything, it’s probably time to take a step back. There’s been a worrying trend over the last few years demanding people show up and do more and more, squeezing every last moment from their day. The truth is you need to be rested to perform. It’s far better to step away, and come back with excitement in shorter, more concentrated hours. We’ve put together some ideas to helps to help you tune into your rhythm, how you like to work and what brings you joy.

Slow down and think

Being busy or worrying isn’t useful for thinking strategically. Being present, and thinking about what your real goals are, helps you see what you need to do. Do you need to do everything on your list? Is it getting you closer to where you need to be? Take the pressure off. Relax and come back to your work. You’ll see more clearly and be more productive.

Be honest

Know what you’re working towards. Does it fit in with your vision of your life or are you working towards someone else’s dream? Know what your own goals are, and use these to motivate and focus your work.

Be inspired and creative

Whatever you do, you can be creative in the way you think. Give yourself time each week to be inspired and to absorb new ideas. It could be as simple, and profound, as going for a walk and really noticing what’s around you. The artist and designer Coco Lom is an inspiration for us, encouraging us to notice more by looking for patterns and shapes in the world around us.

Focus on finding joy

We waste a lot of time on tasks that aren’t useful, thinking they are essential or procrastinating, and possibly even self sabotaging. We’ve all been there so you’re not alone. If you find you’re doing this, and it’s taking time away from your real work, you need to make a change. Either set up your day so you do the work that you want to focus on first, or make a list of the work you love versus the work you really dislike. Start to think about ways to get rid of the work that’s making you unhappy or how you can make it more enjoyable.

Look after your body

Your business is as much you as you are it. If you’re not looking after your body, you’re essentially not looking after your business either. Remember to check in and see how you’re feeling. If you’re tired, you need to rest. If you’re feeling restless, change the scenery, go for a walk or run. Move your body in ways that feel good for you.

Find your rhythm 

Rather than try to live how someone else does, get to know yourself and how you like to work. You might like to get up late and work late, or get up early and finish before noon, or you might like to work in short, intense bursts or prefer a steady pace. There’s no right or wrong way, but it’s important to find the balance that works for you.

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