Are you stuck in an overworking trap?
Maybe it’s because of our (mostly unproven) belief we have that the more we work the more successful we will become? Maybe it’s because (we think) our competition is working 10 hour days, so we need to keep up?
Whatever the reason, more and more executives and leaders are struggling with working long hours, which often leads to being overwhelmed and exhausted. And, who needs that?
If this sounds like you, you may feel like you are hanging on by a thread trying to keep up with work, family, and other pressing demands. You may even feel as though nothing is receiving your true attention.
The good news is, you can make the change and get out of the overworking trap. It’s your choice and it’s under your control! With some well-focused, sincere intentions and goals in place, you can take back the control. It starts with you setting your boundaries.
Three Steps to Setting Up Boundaries that Work
1. Decide when you will not be working. As a professional, it is almost impossible to work a traditional 9 to 5 day. However, you can decide the days and times that you absolutely will not be working. Whether you decide that after 8 you don’t work or that Sunday’s are a day-off, make the commitment to yourself and to stick with it.
2. Build a support system. There is no way that you can do everything. Whether it is at home or at the office, you need help. And, that’s okay. The key to finding help is building a support system and team you can rely on when needed. Learn to delegate tasks to this team and to give up the control for the small things so that you can focus on what’s really important.
3. Create time for self-care. A struggle for many business owners and executives is finding the time for self-care. Be sure to build this time into your daily schedule. Make time in your busy day for rest, relaxation and exercise. You need down time for your health and well being. Even if it’s just a five minute, step-away-from-your-desk—it’s YOUR time to take care of yourself.
Keep in mind as you are taking these steps that they are non-negotiable. When you put you time in your schedule, it must stay there. When you decide on non-working hours, keep them non-working. When you delegate a task, really hand it over to someone else. (The first few times are the hardest, but after that—you may decide that you really like that!)
Each step allows you to break free from the overworking trap and become more focused in your life and your work.