By Linda Van Valkenburgh, MS, CCMC, CJSS, CSMCS, CELDC
[email protected]

How many hours a week do you spend working? Don’t forget to include the time you spend answering phone calls, texts, and emails when you are at home. Almost half of American workers routinely work 50 hours or more every week.
Working all of those hours can start to negatively affect both your health and family life. But how do you balance your personal life with your desire to excel in your career?
We have a few tips to help you achieve the perfect work and home life balance.

Unplug from Technology
Advancements in technology have done impressive things for collaboration and connectivity. Except that it also has brought an expectation of constant availability. Unfortunately, this means that the workday never ends.
Turn off work notifications while spending time with your family. Constant notifications from work will fuel an underlying feeling of stress and take your attention away from your family. It prevents you from being in the moment and mentally present.
If you can’t completely turn off, set hard rules for when you spend time with family and when you work from home. Then dedicate 100% of your attention during that time. Your work product and family relationships will improve thanks to your mental focus.

Let go of Being Perfect
You may feel pressured to be perfect in everything you do. Do not give in to this pressure. You are human, and you will make mistakes. The key to success isn’t being perfect; it’s identifying a problem or failure, presenting a solution, and moving forward with the issue corrected.
If you continue to hold on to perfectionist tendencies, they will become unhealthy. You will eventually experience burnout. So let go of being perfect and instead focus on excellence.

Limit Time Wasters
You may feel that you need to work the extra hours to get everything required of you done. Address this by taking a look at your day to day activities in the office. Eliminate negative influences that take time away from your important tasks.
If emails or surfing the internet tend to be your downfall, then establish rules. This could be an app on your laptop that tracks your time and limits your usage.
By limiting the time you waste at work, you’ll become more productive and produce better quality work. Not only will this reduce your at-home work time, but it will get you noticed at work. This will help you advance your career by developing a reputation as someone who gets things done.

Change Your Home Routine
Sometimes we fall into a routine that doesn’t work, but we don’t realize it until we take a moment to evaluate things. You may find that specific tasks and duties that you have at home are causing you stress. Work with your family to change your routine to reduce this stress.
By not worrying about what you have to do at home, you can focus on your work tasks better. This helps separate your thoughts and allow you to excel at work.

Consider Different Avenues for Growth
Sometimes the future we thought we wanted doesn’t work with our current life situation. This doesn’t mean our dreams of advancing our career are over. Instead, it means that it’s time to get creative. Don’t allow yourself to develop tunnel vision where you chase the next promotion at your current company.
Consider instead obtaining higher profile clients or more visible projects. Think about ways you can advance your career in a nontraditional way. You may find that by prioritizing family from the start, you find a company that agrees with the valuation. Now you can advance your career with a company that supports your desire for a balanced life between work and home.

Let’s get to work!
If you are ready to move your executive career forward contact me today at 203-323-9977 or [email protected]