5 Ways to Improve Your Work-Life Balance

As fall makes its appearance, memories of carefree, joy-filled summer vacations start to fade, and the time to get back to reality relentlessly knocks at our doors. This bittersweet back-to-the-grind realization can sometimes bring uncontrollable feelings of anguish that can’t be ignored. As we know, for most work is the number one source of stress. When it comes to office life, there is what we call good stress; the one that comes with pushing yourself to achieve great things, the one that keeps you motivated & excited about upcoming projects; and chronic stress, the one that can quickly affect your life in a very negative way. If you’re struggling with the end-of-summer transition, here are some tips & tricks to help you get back into the 9-to-5 groove with ease.

Morning routine
To start your day on the right foot, it’s always a good idea to set your alarm an hour—or more—before you are scheduled to leave for the day. This will give you enough time to wake up properly, have breakfast, and get ready. In order to save time, make sure to prepare your bag the night before, and carefully choose your outfit to avoid a time-consuming wardrobe crisis in the morning. If you need a little office style inspiration, take a look at our selection of comfortable workwear separates. Opt for tailored pieces that make you feel put-together and confident to take on the day.

The commute
If you’re using public transportation: a good book, your favourite music, or a funny podcast should keep you entertained, and feeling cool as a cucumber, even during the longest delays.
If you’re driving: not only can you listen to the most uplifting tunes to keep your spirits high, you can also sing at the top of your lungs—a technique that is guaranteed to help you escape the chaos, and turn that frown upside down—even on Monday mornings.

At the office

1) On-duty decorWe spend the majority of our time at work, and making the most of it is extremely important to our well-being. Whether you work in an office, cubicle, or open workspace, there’s nothing more depressing than a cold, impersonal or disorganized workspace. It may seem like making your workspace warm & homey is out of your control, but there are slight adjustments you can make. Adding a personal touch can really make a space come to life, opt for: quirky pictures of your kids, nieces, or nephews going through the awkward missing-teeth phase, a custom screensaver of your cat, a plant to care for, or a display of your favourite artwork. Dorothy said it best “there’s no place like home”, so why not bring a piece of home to your 8 by 8 workweek digs

2) Disconnect
Even if you absolutely love what you do, having a healthy work-life balance can have a tremendous impact on your professional life: lasting passion, continued motivation, and improvements in your all-around performance. There is more to life than work, and you shouldn’t let it consume you. Easier said than done in some cases, but forcing yourself to leave work where it belongs—at the office—is good for career longevity. After a long day at the office, it’s important to decompress and practice self-care, making time for hobbies and spending time with loved ones can help you do that.

3) Take a breatherTaking regular breaks is a great way to stay productive throughout the day. No, I don’t mean eating a Kit-Kat or inhaling a sandwich while watching YouTube videos at your desk; I mean going for a power walk, or simply leaving the building to grab a coffee across the street. The objective: reset, reboot, and come back to your desk feeling refreshed. At the Laura Canada head office for example, our e-commerce team meets in the boardroom to do yoga during lunch. Talk about a great way to decompress!

4) Yawns no more
To help you beat the infamous 2 o’clock crash, healthcare professionals suggest eating a healthy afternoon snack to boost your energy level. Sure, a cup of coffee will do the trick, but according to an article in Fitness Magazine, fresh bananas & apples are the number one recommended choices to avoid being impaired by that troublesome post-lunch coma.

5) Have a plan
Instead of leaving things to the last minute, it’s better to stay on top of your tasks as they are assigned to you–common knowledge that we sometimes chose to ignore, regardless of how unpleasant the feeling of potentially missing a deadline is. A good rule of thumb to avoid this scenario altogether, is having a plan. At the beginning of the week, make a list of things to do and prioritize them by order of importance. There is no better feeling than physically crossing things of your to-do list, am I right? Now, stop procrastinating and get back to work!

We’d love to hear your best tips on how to get through the workweek.

 

Adapted from French by Jonelle Larouche

 

Written by Pauline Ponchaux

Straight from Northern France, Pauline has a great admiration for “baked-just-right-baguettes”, waffles, and sweets at brunch. Films from the '80s and '90s are almost a religion, and she adores reciting memorized lines from her favourite movies at any given time. Since she moved to Quebec – two years ago – Pauline has developed a passionate curiosity for the reoccurring discrepancies between the “current temperature” and the “feels like temperature” advertised on The Weather Network. She also likes: reading in the metro, strumming the strings of her ukulele while dreaming of beaches and sunshine, trips to exotic places, Barcelona and Güell architecture (and let’s not forget sangria of course), cats, Tom Hanks, Bill Murray, and The Beatles.

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