This might seem like counter-intuitive advice for all us out there who know that in order to succeed, we need to give it our best. No matter if our frame of work is an entry-level job in which we don’t plan to spend too much time, or the top job of our dreams, or building our own start-up brick by brick, we’ve been told countless times that we need to give it 110% and giving it any less than that is a mistake. While not arguing for a low involvement and a superficial attitude about work, we need to see if maybe these imperatives aren’t sometimes understood wrongly as allowing your career stress to take over your mind and ultimately your life. This kind of allowing things to get out of hand can lead to an improper work-life balance that ends up sabotaging both your career and your personal life. It’s no secret that while a sufficient work ethic can still be a problem for some people, there are many others who take it too seriously and end up endangering their health and well-being while sacrificing everything for work. Here’s what you need to know about a healthier approach to this balance and about recognizing the signs that you need to set better boundaries.
What Is an Ideal Balance in One’s Work Life
Even if you attain some kind of success while not setting good boundaries between your work life and personal life, you will not be able to maintain it in satisfying ways. Setting and enforcing boundaries in a daily manner is a basic well-being skill. Unfortunately, understanding this is often not a given, but needs to be learned later into adulthood. The messages and lessons that we receive from our mentors in the first part of our lives (childhood and adolescence) is that we need to just succumb to external authority and be as available and possible. In very few cases people teach you that you need to set better boundaries.
An ideal balance between the career and the personal aspects of life is one where you don’t feel too uncomfortable about the spare time you have left (like having enough time for sustaining your well-being through sleep, personal grooming and such other basic needs) or uncomfortable about the tasks you need to perform and the work relations in your job environment. For example, if you feel like your boss is having an abusive attitude towards you or asks you to do things that make you feel uncomfortable, you clearly have imbalance issues and need to set better boundaries.
A Few Signs That You Need to Set Better Boundaries
Feeling poorly about going to work every day is a clear sign that something is amiss. If you find yourself experiencing a strong sense of dissatisfaction about your job and being in that environment, perhaps it’s time to start asking yourself why. Does being in that place put you in uncomfortable positions in any way? For example, do you ever feel that you may be your team’s scapegoat or anything like that?
If your answers are positive, then you need to set better boundaries, because these kinds of things don’t get to happen just by themselves. You may not like to hear this, but it takes two to tango and you’re the co-author of everything that happens to you. In one way or another, you’ve given the impression that it’s ok for others to put you in these uncomfortable positions. But it’s not too late to start changing that, if you need to set better boundaries between yourself and your work environment. Take it one step at a time and remember that it’s never too late to regain your work-life balance.