Managing work-life balance in modern life is a constant juggle and even more uncertain now as we navigate a world with COVID-19. More than ever it’s really important that we look after our mental and physical health. People are working longer hours, working from home, and trying to manage work while homeschooling children. This is almost an impossible task. Being defined to our homes during lockdown has meant less time for all the important in life like family time, hobbies and other interests.
Melinda Gates recently referred to women as facing a “time poverty” as more often than not the burden of childcare and household management falls to the Mum.
Time is a finite resource and we need to manage it carefully. We need to prioritise what is important to us and how we want to spend our time.
Our top tips for time management include;
- Learn to say no. It sounds simple but it’s not. Every time you say yes to someone, you have to say no to something else. Time is precious.
- Make sure to schedule “me” time. This could be the gym, meditation, a date night or a walk. It could a cup of coffee on your own. It’s whatever allows you to relax and release the stresses of the day. It’s important to schedule a small portion of time each day.
- Perfection is overrated. We have a tendency to try and ensure everything is perfect. Nothing is perfect, we need to learn to accept that good is good enough.
- Stop multi-tasking especially in work. Again we are all guilty of this. Productivity goes down by 40% when you multi-task. Focus on one thing at a time.
- It’s ok to ask for help!
Home-schooling and working from home
As we are all beginning to realise home-schooling just doesn’t work when you also have to hold down a fulltime job working for home. If your partner is also at home try splitting the day into shifts whereby each of you has a certain number of hours undisturbed where you can work and the other looks after the children.
Although home-schooling has gone on a lot longer than any of us anticipated don’t get stressed if your children are not managing to get any work done. They will catch up. Now might be a good time to teach them some life skills like cooking or learning to clean up after themselves!
Now more than ever we need to be conscious of our mental health and the impact that the pandemic is having on it. Every aspect of our lives has been turned upside down and this has happened all over the world. We can take some comfort knowing that we are all in this together but even if we don’t realise it now this pandemic is taking a huge toll of us all mentally.
We need to be kind to ourselves and don’t expect too much during this crisis. Also, be conscious of the impact this is having on children. Answer their questions as honestly as you can regarding the virus and any other worries they may have.
Get outside for some fresh air every day, even if it’s just for a 15-minute walk. Your mind and body will thank you for it.
These are unprecedented times and all of us are suffering in some way. If you are struggling there are lots of supports out there such as Aware who have a support line for anyone who is worried about depression. This operates from 10am to 10pm, 7 days a week or Spunout who provide assistance to 16-25 year olds to live happy, healthy and active lives.
Never underestimate how vital it is to look after your own health, if you’re healthy and happy, you can be a great role model for your children.