For me, it’s hard to imagine working a job where I don’t get out until 10 or 11 pm every night. A job where I can’t make weekend plans because I never know if something is going to drop and I am going to have to be on hand to pick up the pieces. Where making plans with my friends and family is something that can’t happen on a regular basis and my only social communications involve a phone or the internet.
I also can’t imagine a life where every day is mine by choice and I have no responsibilities (regardless of whether or not I am making income). A life where I could party all day and all night. or sleep all day. Or sit around and wait for a phone call.
I can tell you one thing though, if you fall into either of those categories there are some unnecessary challenges that will come with the territory. You can’t get all of your fulfillment/satisfaction out of one thing. Because, if that one thing should ever disappoint, it will be much harder to deal with it. If you spend all your time, kicking your ass at work and no time enjoying yourself, there will be times when you are overlooked or didn’t get a promotion that you wanted. If you don’t have the social life or outside activities to focus some time and energy on, this can be seriously depressing and damaging to your mental health. Likewise, if you are only looking for social fulfillment – you will eventually be left out of the conversation when your friends have work the next day or talk about moving up a corporate ladder or how their business is doing.
It’s important to spread your eggs out. You should have meaningful relationships and you should have a career or volunteer activity that you can also throw your efforts into. No matter what, you should be working towards something whether it’s creating content or art, etc or managing and making a household more efficient or volunteering to be part of a community garden, it’s important to be an active participant in life.
How did you establish your work life balance? Was it difficult? Thoughts? Questions? Comments? Leave below.
Although I have only been a “Manager” for a couple of months now and most of my job doesn’t involve direct managing of employees, I have definitely experienced “managing” enough to know what works and what doesn’t. Here are some quick tips for managers who need a refresh.
- If you make a mistake, own up to it. It is disheartening to watch your manager blame or use a “we” when everyone in the room knows whose fault it is (not that your m.o. should be the blame game). If you are honest about your mistakes, your employees are more likely to feel comfortable being honest about theirs and they are more likely to respect you – we are all human here.
- Be an active participant in what your employees are doing. You should know all of their jobs inside and out, so when a problem arises you can be the most knowledgeable on the subject, not the other way around. Also, when an employee leaves you will know the work and the kind of person you want to be their replacement. The more you need your employees for every little thing, the less valuable you are as an employee.
- Keep your direct reports in the loop. When you can share some information about upcoming company-wide issues or successes, let your team know so they can distribute the information downward. Letting your employees know about wins and losses lets them feel like they are part of a team not just a stiff company.
- Offer to help. If you see an employee that looks like they are overly stressed offer to help them but actually provide assistance. Maybe you know a better way to help solve a problem they are having or can take something off their plate to help them meet a deadline. Even if you don’t, they will feel like you are concerned about them, in a positive way.
- Acknowledge their wins. If someone on your team is promoted, announce it. If an employee receives a letter of thanks from a client, share it. This will help to create a culture where your teams wants wins. Appreciating your employees will go a long way.
These 5 tips will definitely help you encourage a positive team environment with growth for both you as a manager and for them as your employees.