If you’re like me, you’re always searching for the perfect balance, and one area that I’m constantly fighting my own self in is the battle of WORK vs. HOME. Sometimes it’s literally exhausting, and I’m not sure I’ll ever find the answer to it. It can be discouraging! So when Sarah from www.freepeoplesearch.org contacted me and wanted to share information along these lines for all of us at The Road to Domestication, I jumped at the chance! Let’s see if she can help!
Balancing work responsibilities with home life has been a daunting proposition for as many years as people have been going to work. Whether full or part-time, careers get in the way of domestic duties; prompting over-extended home makers to seek relief.
Each situation carries its own challenges, so there is no precise blueprint available for balancing competing aspects of your life. If you are like most others, though, following several proven strategies can help you ease demands and find an agreeable balance between domestic and workplace obligations.
Prioritize with an eye toward economy
Economy isn’t always about saving money. Time and energy are your most valuable resources, so they must be dished out responsibly. As you age and family responsibilities become more numerous, your body simultaneously slows down. Managing tasks you controlled easily in your youth requires greater effort, and sometimes takes more time. Home improvements, hobbies, travel, and other activities are eclipsed by less ambitious daily tasks required to keep yourself and family afloat.
Keeping up with everything as you continually add more to your plate is impossible, no matter how energetic or efficient you are with your time. Prioritizing takes an honest look at what you’d like to do, filtering your expectations with realistic views of what you actually can do. Unfortunately, achieving the proper balance between home and work obligations sometimes means cutting back on activities you enjoy, lightening your load.
Lean on schedules and routines
Unexpected events pop-up in daily life; especially when juggling career responsibilities with those at home. Taking an active role in scheduling, and following structured routines are great ways to stabilize your agenda, giving you more control to find the balance you need. Taking pen to paper to account for your days is an illuminating experience; often highlighting ways to achieve greater balance. By scheduling your time, for example, breaks and leisure pursuits can be built-in, so they are not taking time away from your work and domestic responsibilities.
Streamline your days
When pressed, many people realize they move through life in very inefficient ways. To help restore balance to your life, take stock of your daily routines, incorporating efficiency of movement. Trips to market and other errands, for example, capture significant parts of your days, unless they are managed effectively. Life doesn’t always furnish the lead times we’d like, but anticipating events and planning for them has a balancing impact on the flow of your days, yielding less surprises. Couples, for example, use a “divide and conquer” approach to streamline their schedules, affording better balance, without sacrificing family time.
Use technology to save time
The information age leads to hectic living for some families balancing job roles with domestic duties; but it also provides technology to help balance the pull of modern life. Whenever possible, utilize technological advances to increase your own efficiency – at work and home. Something as simple as automated online bill payments, for example, saves you time writing checks and mailing payments, which account for significant drains on your schedule.
Telecommuting is growing in popularity, due to technological advances allowing workers to conduct business; including web and video conferences, from home. In this case technology adds a new option for balancing work and home life, by naturally bringing the two realms closer together.
Balancing work responsibilities with demands at home will continue to challenge modern families, but organization and other proactive approaches can help ease the burden!
Great points, Sarah! (This was a guest post by Sarah Brooks from Best People Search. She is a Houston based freelance writer and blogger. Questions and comments can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
I really need to put some of this into practice, for sure! How about you? How do YOU balance home and work? Do share your secrets!