I have worked hard over the past four years without taking a significant vacation break. That changed a few months ago when I took an adventurous 10-day tour of southern Mexico. This tour reminded me of the importance of balancing the daily grind of work with the relaxation of life. As a busy CEO, you need to remind yourself about this too.
The challenge for us is identifying how to maintain a healthy balance between work and play. Don’t think of work and life as separate topics; Think as work as part of your life. But, don’t let work overload your life, which is what we all tend to do. After all, isn’t hard work how we got to where we are in life today?
• Overworking ourselves has a negative impact on our health and happiness.
You made it in life and you need to remember to enjoy your accomplishments. If hard work feels like a constant burden, take a second look at what you are doing. Work is where you spend roughly 80% of your life. Sometimes it requires taking a moment to think about what excites you and taking a leap of faith, it will be well worth it in the long run.
That’s what Mexico did for me. It reminded me to enjoy work and life on a daily basis. I admit I had my iPhone in my pocket during my trip, but I made myself turn it off at certain times of the day. Some remote locations turned it off for me as a natural reminder saying, “It’s time to relax – work can wait a while.”
We can all strive to achieve a “work hard, play hard” philosophy. It is one of the best ways to achieve balance, no matter how busy work and life get. With your busy career, it doesn’t mean you can’t live life to the fullest. Prioritize time with your family and friends, shut off your phone and completely disconnect when you can. Put it in your work calendar as you would a meeting. Consider turning on your out of office alert once in a while – just don’t do it to get more work done!
• Balancing work and life can build strong teams within the office family.
When on the job, take time to socialize with employees during breaks. Be sure to bring a bit of the work-life philosophy into the workplace during a staffer’s birthday. As a result, your expression of a work-life atmosphere extends to your employees who, as a result, begin to arrive to work feeling like they are part of a team, and they become more likely to see their colleagues as friends.
It is exciting to see your employees change the way they think about the balance of work and life. We are not in the office during a typical workday anymore. The millennials are changing that by warping the perception of the traditional 9-5 workday. Many businesses are exploring new ways of working with that concept because some of the brightest ideas are made while at home or on vacation. By encouraging yourself, and your team, to take time to balance work and life, you will be ahead of the game and your company will be repaid when your business attracts the brightest and best who want to work for you. Vacation anyone?