Wednesday, 18 July 2018

How to be more productive at work to restore your work/life balance

When it comes to your work do you think you’re doing a ‘good enough’ job, or are you always looking to improve what you do to get bigger and better results? Self-improvement is, in itself, a positive thing, however often we get caught in the trap where we feel that only the best will do and that we have to produce work that is ‘perfect’ in order to be valued.

The problem is that often when we strive for perfection, it can actually impact on our productivity – as well as on our ability to enjoy ‘down time’ with friends and family. This article from The Guardian is spot on when it says that we must stop striving for perfection and that working hard to get the work life balance right, not only benefits our own wellbeing but can also give our career a boost.

There are many tips to share that can maximise your productivity at work, such as: tackling tough tasks in the morning when we're at our most alert and scheduling regular admin time into our diaries to deal with the more trivial tasks, such as email management and returning calls; not to mention the benefits of taking regular breaks to keep energy levels high and your mind clear and focused. You can read more on improving your summer productivity here.

And if you're serious about redressing the work/life balance, we want you to remember the following:

Strive for great – but not perfection

We all want to do a good job, but there comes a point when our quest for perfection means we can never truly switch off and concentrate on other things. When tasks are completed we continue to ask ourselves: how can I make this better? Or: what have I missed? rather than applaud ourselves on a job well done. It can be hard to let things go at work, but by striving to do a great job, rather than a perfect one, we allow ourselves to move forward from tasks and free our mind to focus on other things – such as time spent with family and friends at home. The same can be said for home tasks too. By putting pressure on ourselves to do things better all the time we increase stress levels when what we need to do is give ourselves a break and learn that sometimes ‘good enough’ is perfectly acceptable.


In order to maintain a healthy work life balance, we have to learn how to carve out time for each – rather than allow the lines to be blurred. We need to focus on them one by one to give each our full attention. Failing to do so means that we're never fully present and do not give our best self. This means it’s much harder to progress, as we become preoccupied and overwhelmed. So when you’re at home, switch off your work phone, if only for an hour. The world isn’t going to end if we go offline for an hour or two. And make a deal with your family and friends that it’s emergency calls only during core work hours.

When it comes to work life balance, there are not many people who feel that the balance is positively tipped towards their home and family life, rather than their work! Yet, having a fulfilling family life serves to benefit the time you spend at work so it makes sense to find the time for family and friends when you can. The saying goes that all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy – don’t be Jack – do what you need to do to get the balance right.

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