In the year 2022, we live our lives online more than we ever have before. From social media to instant messaging and video conferencing, the number of options the modern world has provided for communication and connection is truly astonishing. Whether you need to get in touch with a coworker or drum up leads as a real estate agent, chances are there’s an app or service for the task!
While these new technologies have certainly enhanced the convenience and efficiency with which we live our everyday lives, they’re not without their downsides and drawbacks. Whether they’re handheld or stationary, the electronic devices and services that were intended to improve our quality of life can also be detrimental to it.
One of the most destructive ways in which technology can damage your mental health and relationships is by blurring the line between work and leisure hours. In the past, once you clocked out of work you were free to pursue whatever interests and hobbies you pleased. Today, due to the ease with which just about anyone can be contacted makes it far easier for bosses and coworkers to keep you mentally at work even though you’re technically on your own time.
So, you ask, what is to be done? Is there any way to reduce the impact that work has on your personal life and relationships, or are we simply doomed to spend our lives in the illuminated rectangular confines of our phones and computers? Today, we’re going to get to the bottom of this, and give you some helpful tips on how to balance personal professional relationships in the year 2022!
The art of balance
Now, as you likely already know, there’s no magic formula for success when it comes to balancing personal and professional relationships. We can’t tell you the secrets to inner peace or deep wisdom, but we can give you some tips that will help you find these things for yourself! Buckle up, because we’re going to be taking a deep dive into the extremely interesting and important topic of balance in personal and professional life!
Limit usage of technology
We know, we know. This one isn’t particularly easy, nor is it something that most of us will enjoy doing. Technology is a central part of most of our lives, and using it even somewhat less can be overwhelming and frightening. Nevertheless, if you’re trying to regain balance in your personal and professional life, it’s an essential step!
One of the most detrimental ways in which technology affects our lives is by making it exceedingly easy and convenient for employers and colleagues to message and/or call you at a moment’s notice. Whether there’s an unfinished task that needs to be completed or a supplementary assignment, you’re never more than a phone call or text away when you’ve got your phone in your hand.
If you want to break this pattern, a good place to start is to start silencing or turning off your phone while you’re out of the office. Work while you’re at work, but make it clear to your coworkers and managers that you aren’t going to work while you’re enjoying your leisure hours. It may feel like a big step, but we guarantee you that you won’t regret it!
In the same way that using your phone and computer less while out of the office will help you separate your personal and professional lives, so too will setting boundaries with the people you work alongside of. Unless you work in a position that requires you to be reachable at all times such as medicine or emergency services, setting boundaries is probably a lot easier than you might think!
While bosses will often lead you to believe otherwise, you’re not obligated to work during your free time. Legally speaking, your superiors cannot force you to work extra hours, even if they do their best to make it seem as if they can. Your free time is your own, and if your boss can’t recognize that, then it might be time for a change of employment!
Colleagues are no different, generally speaking; in fact, it’s usually easier to set boundaries with colleagues than it is with your management! Simply make it clear to your coworkers that you will strive to be as productive and professional as possible while at work, but will not be responding to any but the most urgent communications while away. It’s that easy!
Improve your time management skills
Another way that you can escape the ever-present nature of some jobs is to work on your time management skills. While there are plenty of ways that coworkers and bosses can damage your personal relationships by being overly demanding while you’re away from the office, you might find that your poor time management skills are also damaging these same relationships.
If you aren’t managing your time well, then you’re likely to procrastinate, leave vital tasks unfinished or only partially finished, and give your colleagues plenty of reasons to contact you while you’re away from the office. If you want to prevent this from happening, you’ll need to get better at managing your time while you’re at work and at home!
This, in fact, is one of the areas where technology can actually be of significant use. With the help of reminders, alarms, time management aids and other applications made specifically to help people schedule more efficiently, managing personal time is easier than ever. Organize your personal schedule and watch your relationships flourish!
Evaluate your current position
Although there are an abundance of things that you can do to seek out a healthier balance between your work life and personal life, there sometimes comes a time when you’ve just got to throw in the towel and look for a new job. If you’re in a toxic work environment, you won’t be able to find balance until you leave it entirely.
There are a couple of red flags that you should look out for if you’re trying to ascertain whether or not your place of employment is toxic or not. One of the biggest red flags is when your employers demand that you do unpaid labor as a way of showing your loyalty to the company. Your loyalty should be to your loved ones, not a company!
Once you’ve taken stock of the situation, there’s a good chance that you’ll come to the conclusion that you’re not happy with your current job. If you’re not, then it might be time to find a different place to work. You may have to accept a reduced income for a time, but if it means you find a better work-life balance, it will be worth it!
Whether they’re trying to find a real estate agent to help sell their home or seeking help to wrap up a task that you agreed to help them with, colleagues, coworkers and bosses can be tremendously detrimental to your personal time and relationships. If you don’t manage your work life and personal life well, these well meaning individuals can wreak havoc on your personal time, mental health and close relationships!
Hopefully, the advice and information we’ve provided in this article is of some help to you as you pursue a more healthy balance in personal and professional relationships and activities. It won’t be easy to find the perfect balance between these two aspects of life, but with time and effort it’s something that almost everyone can achieve. We wish you the very best of luck!