My work is very important to me, but I find that sometimes I become so engaged in a task or project, that I lose track of time and neglect other responsibilities. How can I achieve a healthier work-life balance?
I’m willing to bet there are thousands of people out there just wishing they had the ability to focus that much on work! But I know to you it doesn’t really feel like a blessing given the way it affects other important areas of your life. So let’s get you some balance.
You’ll likely benefit from some deliberate planning, deciding which times of day are working periods and which are non-working. Then, you can implement a number of technologies to help you disrupt the flow state so you can maintain balance. Depending on what kind of worker you are, a soft chime giving you a 5-minute warning might do the trick to gently pull your attention away. Or, you might need a blaring horn to shake you from your flow state.
If alarms aren’t enough to disrupt you from your work zone, you might integrate more significant support: for computer-based work, having a program like Freedom that blocks you from apps and websites at a set time of the day means the technology can automatically kick you out of your project. For non-digital tasks, having an important competing commitment to attend to could be enough to pull you away, such as a scheduled call with a friend or letting your dog -- who’s been so good to leave you alone while you work! -- out for a bit of fetch.