“Don’t confuse having a career with having a life.” ―Hillary Clinton
The presence of new technology such as smartphone and tablet has enabled us to get in touch with our managers and coworkers all the time, even when we are at home. On the other hand, when we are working at the office, such technology makes it easier for us to interact with the family at home too. Under such circumstances where everything is colliding, is it even possible to separate personal and professional life?
Nowadays, the case of separating personal and professional life seems to be increasingly difficult, considering the two keeps crossing way with each other. In the era where technology has greatly attributed to the significant change and shift in our work patterns and lifestyle, we need a strategy to set a linear border to keep the two realms apart.
Owing to overwhelming work demands and tight deadlines, there are times when people are paying more attention to their business-related issues over personal ones. Such practice is not healthy, as it would cause both mental and physical stress due to imbalanced portion between work and life. Separating the two is crucial in order to achieve enough rest and meet both personal and professional needs.
While it might sound impossible, there are several ways you can do to keep personal and professional life separate and achieve work-life balance:
1. Come and leave work on time
Being professional could mean anything, and unfortunately, staying at the office until late at night does not count on that. Rather, all you have to do is following the basic rule by coming and leaving work on time. If your work hours starts at 9, try to arrive 10-15 minutes earlier so you still have time to prepare yourself before focusing on your tasks. When your work hours ends, avoid lingering on your cubicle to complete the ongoing tasks. Unless they are very urgent, you can always come back tomorrow to finish them.
2. Overcome procrastination at work
If you are the type who could get easily distracted that it makes you procrastinate the job, it is time for you to change the bad habit. Find out what distracts you and try to minimise it as much as possible when you are working. This way, you can use your work time more efficiently and productively.
3. Create different social media accounts
Today, social media is no longer merely used for entertainment and other personal purposes. Major companies are now turning to social media to develop network and engage relationships with customer, employees, and potential talents.
It is not recommended to blend personal and professional information in one social media account. It will be better if you use two different accounts for work and private purposes. For example, for personal interest, it will be more convenient to log in Facebook and connect with only your family, relatives and best friends. As for business interest, you can use LinkedIn to keep in touch with colleagues or business relations.
4. Find activities outside work
Do not let your job define your personality. As a way to refresh your mind from the daily work fatigue, you need to do something different from what you have always done in the office. Find a new hobby which has nothing to do with your job roles, such as gardening, photography or cooking. Once in a while, you might also need to take some time off to travel, have vacations, or simply hang out with non-work friends.
5. Keep personal issues at home
Just like how you have to leave all work affairs when you are at home, you also have to leave all personal affairs when you show up at the office. Be it a problem with your partner, children, or parents, you should be able to put them aside for a while and shift your sole focus to the project you should execute right away.