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Are you finding it rough juggling your job with your home life? Do you struggle with your basic commitments, miss doctors, dentists, optometrists, appointments because you can’t seem to get the time off work?

Even worse do your kids miss their doctor’s dentists, optometrists because you don’t have the time to take them? And what about your aging parents? Who is there to help them? Where do they fit into the schedule?

Cutbacks, technology, efficiencies, aging population, our commitment to putting our children into a zillion different clubs and activities, it doesn’t matter the reason, balancing work and home life is causing Canadians stress.

And if you are like most Canadians you are taking more days off work, using up your company benefits, turning down promotions, being less productive and working fewer hours according to a major Canadian study by Carlton University in partnership with Desjardin Insurance.

This stress is serious stuff. And if you think it’s not that bad, ask yourself, why a major insurance company is paying for this study? Does it have anything to do with the fact that stress increases the risk of heart disease,  asthma, obesity, diabetes, headaches, depression and anxiety just to name a few. Does it have anything to do with the fact that health issues like this increase the risk of death and increase payouts from insurance companies?

I can’t answer these questions but they do make me wonder what I can do to achieve work life balance in my own life.

Here are a few important tips I have found:

“Above all, to thine own self be true”
Take care of yourself and you will be able to care for others. Take time out for yourself. You will clear your mind, become refreshed, invigorated and more effective in all your walks of life. Allocate a specific time each day that is your time. It doesn’t have to be long. It could be that morning cup of coffee, walk around the block or a brief break with a cup of tea and a good book. You pick it and control it. And as the Shakespearean line continues, … “thou canst not then be false to any man”.

Prioritize
Rank everything you need to do. This includes at work and at home. Break them into 3 categories. Must, Maybe and Mmmmmmmm that would be nice.  It stands to reason you will do the Musts first. The Maybes come next but chances are the Mmmmmmmms will fall off the radar.

But not in isolation
But what is most important about prioritization is do not prioritize in isolation. Ask your boss what is important; ask your family what is important.  What you think is important to them may not be important at all.

Conquer the challenge
Creating work life balance is a challenge but like any challenge we face, we can take steps to overcome or we can run away.

Me… I’m not much of a runner. How do you balance work and life? Do you think work/life balance is attainable?