Working from home sounds like a dream to a lot of people. Working on your own terms offers freedom employment doesn’t offer. It almost sounds too good to be true! I’ve been working from home since February 2018 and I have to say love it! If you’re curious, in my last blog post, I actually detailed my daily routine working from home!
Despite the free reign of self-employment, I have seen many other bloggers complain through social media about the loneliness and lack of exercise due to their work.
It’s understandable. We spend a large portion of the day alone working. A lot of time we don’t even need to leave the house (it’s really an introvert’s dream)! Most of us also have a sedentary lifestyle as well, working in front of our laptops for long hours. Eventually, loneliness and weight gain can start to creep in if you’re not intentionally planning time to meet these needs.
THE FINE ART OF PRIORITIZING WHEN WORKING FROM HOME
I would love to do it all, but unfortunately, there isn’t enough time in the day. So what do I, and probably many of you, do? I will prioritize what I perceive as the most important tasks in my day (eg. client work, writing, errands) and put off everything else (eg. going for a walk, reading a novel, seeing friends). And when I say “put off” I mean it doesn’t happen. Sound familiar?
Don’t beat yourself up too much, we’re only human.
Logically, it makes sense to us to focus on our responsibilities because we’re usually accountable to another person. This can be our boss, our husband, children or even society as a whole. These obligations are less flexible and we perceive them as being a top priority.
If we neglect our job we can’t pay the bills. If we don’t cook dinner our family goes hungry. These are responsibilities we can’t avoid without being a horrible person. However, it CAN come at the expense of our own well-being if we aren’t intentionally living a balanced lifestyle, and that is where the problem lies.
Whether you work in an on-site office or run your own business from home, most of us are probably guilty of putting our well-being second and prioritizing everything else.
IMPROVE YOUR WELLBEING WITH TIME BLOCKING
As I mentioned earlier, a lot of people working from home find loneliness and physical health to be an issue. Having the benefit of being able to work without leaving the house can become isolating and sedentary.
While I don’t feel like loneliness is an issue for me (I have four roommates!), the lack of physical activity has definitely taken its toll. Like a lot of people, I don’t prioritize exercise and outings into my day, and instead, work work work.
However, one solution I have been learning and want to share with you is time blocking.
If you’ve never heard of time blocking before, it’s essentially just scheduling your entire day by assigning everything to a time block (hence the name time blocking). This allows you to make sure you’re using your time efficiently but it’s also a great way to fit in some personal time into your day. You’re also more likely to do your task if you have set a specific time rather than have it listed in a task list. One of my favourite YouTubers, Amy Landino, explains it best in her video “Get More Done with Calendar Blocking” (I’ve also embedded below!).
TIME BLOCK YOUR SOCIALIZING AND WORKOUTS
With the time management skill of time blocking you will notice that you can fit anything (most of the time) into your day. This is because you become acutely aware of your free time blocks and can choose to use those periods in a day however you want.
In connection with the disadvantages of working from home, loneliness, and lack of exercise, you can definitely plan to remedy that by blocking it in.
Once you have time blocked your day with your non-negotiable responsibilities, notice if you have any blocks in your day you’re not using for anything. This is your opportunity to schedule in time for YOU. Use these to organize a lunch with a friend, a date with your husband, or participate in a book club to combat loneliness. To make sure you’re moving throughout the day, schedule a half hour walk or 45 minutes at your local gym. You will be doing a world of wonders for your physical health as well as your mental health!
Time blocking these activities will help balance your life out. You will start to feel less stressed and find more happiness in your life when you prioritize your needs and treat your well-being as a non-negotiable.
FOCUSING ON YOUR WELLBEING SHOULD BE A PRIORITY
Working from home shouldn’t negatively impact your well-being. Once you learn the art of time blocking you will notice that you actually have more time to do what is important to YOU.
Your happiness and health should come before anything else. While that is easier said than done, it’s seriously something that shouldn’t be ignored.
For some people, this means taking a yoga class a couple of times a week or eating a healthier diet. A lot of people also enjoy participating in book clubs. Whatever you choose to do, just make sure you are planning time in your day to do something you love.
Neglecting to take care of your health, both physically and mentally, can lead to problems that can affect all areas of your life. In fact, studies have shown that isolation, from lack of social interaction, can increase mortality rates!
It’s very hard to present your best self every day if your burnt out and unhappy, which is why I wholeheartedly advocate putting your own needs first.
Do you use time blocking to help balance your life? Share your tips in the comments below. Looking forward to reading all of your responses!
Last Updated on