Most of us always have our smartphones on us, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to have a healthy balance between your responsibilities at work and your home life.
We feel uncomfortable when we switch off our computers and phones and engage in an unplugged way. And worse, people think we are ignoring them if we don’t respond to their messages. This is particularly true of our coworkers who expect us to be available during off hours.
Is there ever a time when successful professionals are not technically on-the-clock? If you’re in the U.S., the answer is “not really.”
The United States ranks 30th among 38 countries in work/life balance, according to today’s infographic. Americans work an average of 3.61 hours a day after they leave the office, while spending an average of only 30 minutes a day caring for loved ones. That is not healthy, and that needs to change.
There are a few ways to alter your lifestyle to make time for non-work activities. Switch off your phone when you’re sleeping, delegate work to other people if you need to, and share evening and weekend responsibilities with other coworkers.
Also, try using an app like RescueTime, which clocks your daily habits, analyzes your productivity, and alerts you when you spend too much time on an activity. If you catch yourself saying, “my job is killing me,” it is probably true. A study from researchers at Harvard and Stanford found that stressful jobs can shave a few dozen years off your life. If you are always feeling overwhelmed, it may be time for a career move.