Tips and Apps for a Healthy Work-Life Balance
With starting a business comes a great deal of responsibility – this includes taking care of staff, dealing with financial risks, and establishing good relations with company partners. Most entrepreneurs suffer from the stresses of long hours in the workplace and often form unhealthy habits that induce decreased productivity. Without sufficient work-life management, it’s easy to fall into the trap of overworking yourself and losing motivation. To combat the pressures of entrepreneurship, here are ways you can start building healthy habits with the help of technology.
Efficient Energy Allocation:
The cliché that often comes to mind with work-life balance is time management. However, most of the time, this alone is not enough to work efficiently, and the burden of living up to your own expectations may actually drain you in the long run. Take for instance you find yourself needing to update the statutory books with the new corporate officers, finish a SWOT analysis on an impending company project, and prepare a subsequent presentation report. Outside of your work, you have to make sure to fold your laundry, check your emails, and grab some dinner with some friends. You estimate that these tasks will take up the following amount of time: Statutory books: 5 hours (Due first), Project: 10 hours (Due next), Report: 5 hours (Due last).
With the time management mentality, you might allot 20 hours straight back-to-back to finish these tasks with some intermittent leisure breaks. What tends to happen is that you will set 20 hours as the expectation but will finish only 10 hours of work in reality. The reason behind this is because when you first begin working on your to-do list, you tend to take about 20 minutes to get into the flow of work and use the next hour to really be 100% productive. But when you put all your brain energy into one task for a long duration of time, you start losing out on that percentage of productivity – your mind tends to wander more, you’re less inclined to gets spurs of creativity. All this could be much more easily managed with efficient energy allocation in addition to time management. Rather than working on tasks the order that they’re due, start with a task that’s easier to finish. Knowing that you have a warmup period of about 20 minutes, tackling the easier, no-brainer problems allows you to feel some degree of accomplishment and puts you in a better working mood. Then, the next hour could be used to tackle the more difficult, energy-draining tasks that require a higher level of productivity. You don’t necessarily have to work on one thing the entire time either. If you work on something for 30 minutes and find yourself feeling drained, move on to a new task to refresh your mind. This way, you’ll spend less time dragging on a task you’re truly not motivated to do anymore.
Some helpful apps I like to use to maintain productivity include the following:
Habitica: Available across Android and iOS devices, this is a unique productivity application that gamifies your life. It turns all your self-imputed tasks into monsters you have to defeat and holds you accountable to finishing the task by deducting your in-game character’s life points. Another cool feature is the party quest system integrated within the game. You can partner with other work-life balance aspirers and hold each other accountable in a collaborative setting. As the name of the app suggests, this app helps you develop good habits that can aid you in the long run.
Sleep, Diet & Exercise:
Sleep, diet, and exercise are undeniably vital in fueling stronger cognitive awareness and promoting emotional well-being. Studies show that sleep deprivation links to a greater risk of depression, high blood pressure, and a compromised immune system. Improper diet and exercise are equally taxing on your overall health and can reduce your productivity in the workplace.
Here are a few apps that promote proper self-care:
Fitbit: The Fitbit tracker app pairs with the device to track your sleeping progress at night. In the morning, you can review your sleep trends on a graph and determine if you’re getting quality rest every night. Additionally, you can set goals, reminders, and alarms within the app that can help you establish healthier sleeping habits. There’s also the option to track your exercise and develop a stable workout regimen.
Hello Fresh: With a Hello Fresh subscription, you can order delicious recipes from the app and have them deliver to you fresh ingredients and the steps on how to prepare your meal. This is an especially handy app for people who are new to cooking and want to practice healthier dietary habits.