I went to a workshop on work-life balance last week. This was at the WCC Women in the Chemical Enterprise Breakfast at the 2013 Fall ACS meeting. Presenter, Lynn Zettler, shared some important tips on how to deal with the work-life balance issues. Lynn went over the history of work-life balance and showed how the problem originated in the 1970s. Computer, floppy discs and cell phone, were invented in the 1970s. Along with these new gadgets, came the terms, “workaholic” and “work-life balance”. It became difficult for people to disconnect with work and it turned into a 24-7 shift.
The technological advancements still continue to affect today’s work-life balance. Is there an easy way to balance work and life? Lynn presented the following helpful techniques:
- A + Care
- B + Boundaries
- C + Choices
A + Care, is the art of delegating. We don’t need to do everything ourselves. For example, hiring someone to help with housework can save us precious time that we can spend with family and friends. We should lighten our workload when it gets too heavy and ask for what we need. It is about delegating and taking time to decompress.
B + Boundaries, is getting rid of the “energy vampires” from our lives. We may need to “fire a friend” who is taking up our energy by sharing all of their problems with us. This also means we need to learn how to deal with conflicts and confront professionally. Lynn uses the book, Crucial Conversations, for conflict resolution. She talked about “the sky is blue” technique that can be used to calm people down and gain agreement between two parties in conflict resolution.
C + Choices, is a technique that can be used when making a difficult or important decision. Lynn shared the Suzy Welch 10-10-10 method. Pose the problem as a question, what are the consequences of a decision in the next ten minutes, ten months and ten years. Looking at a decision in the frame of life, values, and where we want to be in ten years, can help us think clearly about the ramification of an important decision.
Do you have any other tips on work-life balance?