This week’s WELLNESS WEDNESDAY’s article is focusing on "Work Life Balance." I know, I know "Work Life Balance" has been the hot catch phrase over the past few years. However, for a lot of people the concept of "Work Life Balance" is just that, a concept. Many of us find our stress levels increasing because we wear so many hats and try to juggle them all at the same time. Some may call it multitasking, but we often began to feel overwhelmed, which can lead to poor health. According to an article published by Mental Health America titled "Work Life Balance:"
many of us are torn between juggling heavy workloads, managing relationships and family responsibilities, and squeezing in outside interests. Therefore, it is no surprise that more than one in four Americans describe themselves as "super stressed", and that’s not balanced—or healthy.
The article mentioned how our rush to meet all our expectations at the office and home lead to increased stress levels, which decreases our productivity and can damage our relationships. Prolonged stress will eventually weaken our immune system and double the risk of heart attacks or other mental/ physical ailments.
To offset some of the gloom and doom that can be caused by our attempts to do it all; the article provides some easy tips on how to change the concept of "Work Life Balance" into a reality:
- Set manageable goals each day. Being able to meet priorities helps us feel a sense of accomplishment and control.
- Be efficient with your time at work. When we procrastinate, the task often grows in our mind until it seems insurmountable.
- Take five. Taking a break at work isn’t only acceptable, it’s often encouraged by many employers.
- Tune in. Listen to your favorite music at work to foster concentration, reduce stress and anxiety, and stimulate creativity.
- Communicate effectively. Be honest with colleagues or your boss when you feel you’re in a bind.
- Give yourself a break. No one’s perfect! Allow yourself to be human and just do the best you can.
- Unplug. The same technology that makes it so easy for workers to do their jobs flexibly can also burn us out if we use them 24/7.
- Divide and conquer. Make sure responsibilities at home are evenly distributed and clearly outlined—you’ll avoid confusion and problems later.
- Don't over commit. Do you feel stressed when you just glance at your calendar? If you’re over scheduled with activities, learn to say," NO." Shed the Superman/Superwoman urge!
- Get support. Chatting with friends and family can be important to your success at home—or at work—and can even improve your health.
- Take advantage of your company’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Many organizations offer resources through an EAP.
- Stay active. Aside from its well-known physical benefits, regular exercise reduces stress, depression and anxiety, and enables people to better cope with adversity, according to researchers.
- Treat your body right. Being in good shape physically increases your tolerance to stress and reduces sick days.
- Get help if you need it. Don’t let stress stand in the way of your health and happiness. If you are persistently overwhelmed, it may be time to seek help from a mental health professional.
To the entire article can be accessed at http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/work-life-balance
Our mandatory retirement for officers at the age of 57 comes at a time when we are still young! We all want to remain happy and healthy!
As always FPPOA working for you!!!
Dion J Thomas
Supervisory United States Probation Officer
Eastern District of Michigan