Can you achieve productivity while maintaining life balance and being present in all you do? This threesome isn’t the conundrum many make it out to be. It is possible to achieve all three, and when you think about it, you really can’t have one without the other.
Sustained productivity is only attainable with proper life balance if the latter is missing, the act of being productive quickly wanes.
Employers now recognize that overworked employees end up costing the company a lot of money in the long run. The stress of overwork with little downtime is fraught with absenteeism because of stress-related illnesses, poor work results, lack of enthusiasm, burnout, and high turnover.
To help their employees feel valued, be happy, and work efficiently, many employers are offering various options to help reduce stress and overwork. Options may include:
- flexible work hours
- fitness, yoga, meditation, or health classes
- telecommuting/work from home (full-time or a few days per week)
- mandatory vacation time (without work interruptions)
- maternal/paternal leave
- tech and video conferencing tools
How to be Productive
Productivity is simply being efficient. It isn’t about getting more things done each day, but rather getting the important things done consistently. It’s about keeping a steady pace to make sure all bases are covered without risking major errors by going full steam ahead.
Distraction is the main challenge to being and staying productive. It’s commonplace at the office with people milling about, chatting, and drinking coffee. Then, of course, there’s the temptation of checking electronic devices. Telecommuters have similar issues at home with family members making demands, the temptation of getting household chores done, and the lure of favorite television shows a click away.
It’s a fact of life that personal lives intrude upon professional lives. This has a definite impact on productivity, ergo the need for a balance between the two.
Work-Life Balance and Productivity
According to the 2017 World Happiness Report, (the latest report available at the time of writing), a healthy balance between work and home leads to greater job satisfaction and overall well-being. By adjusting daily activities, employees feel more engaged, more productive, and happier at work and home. Here are a few ways to reach this goal:
- Focus on priorities by taking stock of what’s most important.
- Share the load at home. Discuss with your partner, how to divvy up household chores, errands, and childcare.
- Plan your time. Whether at work or home, break up tasks into blocks of no more than 45 minutes. After that point, concentration plummets, taking productivity down with it.
- Set clear goals at work and on the home front.
- Respect boundaries. Make a distinction between personal and professional lives.
- Schedule and prioritize tasks wisely.
- Stay fit, sleep adequately, eat healthfully.
- Spend time with friends and family.
What happens when you have a balanced life and efficiently produce quality work? Energy spent on tasks is prioritized between work life and personal life. There is one element that wraps it all together into one neat package, and that is presentness.
The Role of Presentness
To reach life and work balance, one must be cognizant of what is going on without judging, be conscious of what the voices in your head are saying without judging them, and calmly devise a game plan to suit the situation.
Being present helps you recenter and focus on the task at hand, whether personal or professional.
Bring the trilogy of life balance, productivity, and presentness together by taking a breather and re-centering to feel refreshed, more relaxed, and re-energized. You’ll be able to look at things from a bird’s eye view and get a better perspective on what needs to be done, how to do it faster and more accurately, and when to take a different direction to reach your goal within the time allocated.
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