Stress and burnout have been a hot topic in the corporate space in the last few years, and the COVID-19 pandemic brought it even more to the fore. As job roles morphed into more remote approaches and people worked more from their homes, it seemed like it was going to be a welcome respite for those who were overly exhausted from everyday commute to work and the stress of the workplace.
The data showed otherwise, and it became apparent that the issue of stress and burnout was not as much because of the work ‘place’ as it was because of a combination of organizational cultures and individual habits. Therefore, working from home did not necessarily translate to less stress. In fact, in some cases, it was more stressful.
But stress and burnout are not only limited to the workplace. They affect most people across the entire spectrum of human existence. People have a lot of things calling for their attention. Some of these are important and others are not, and the weight of information, task, distractions and unfulfilled desires can often lead to a huge physical, emotional and mental stress.
“A balanced inner calmness radiates from a peaceful centre. It neither craves others' approval nor rejects others' presence. It neither pulls towards nor pushes away. It has a reverent attitude towards life and all its inhabitants.” - (Donna Goddard, The Love of Devotion)
So how can one maintain a sense of balance in the midst of all of these to create a healthier, happier and more productive life?
Here are 6 tips to help you lay the foundations:
- Understand that balance is not necessarily equilibrium. A life of balance does not mean equal allocation of time for every aspect of your life. Balance is achieved in giving the required priority to the aspects that help you build a more efficient, happy and fulfilled life and achieve your goals and visions per time.
- Decide what is important and plan your schedule accordingly. Do not leave spending time with the kids or your partner to chance and claim they are important. Remember to include rest there too. Rest is important. Read that last sentence again.
- Declutter. Let go of things that no longer serve you. Whether emotionally, mentally, physically, and in your work and business. Many times, more is not better. Inversely, when you clear your space of things that do not serve you, you make more room for growth in the areas that serve you.
- ‘No’ is your friend. It is okay to decline responsibilities and activities that will build up more stress for you. It is okay to not be disposed to help someone if helping them will be detrimental to you. No does not mean you are a bad person; it is an acknowledgement that you are a limited resource and you must manage yourself effectively to get the best out of you.
- Make time to refresh. Rest is your opportunity to refresh, recharge and replenish. Make time for fun and things that renew your energy. Listen to music. Play with friends and family. See a movie. Travel. Whatever helps you to recharge, make time for it.
- Show yourself some gratitude. Give yourself some credit. Celebrate yourself. Celebrating your little wins reinforces positively in your mind that you are making progress. This in turn builds up your positive emotions which helps your productivity.