Let’s talk about work-life balance as a teleradiologist. Being available 24/7 and almost never unplugging from work can lead to exhaustion, sleep disorder, burnout, stress and stress-related illness as well as poor personal relationships. Over-working without taking enough time to recover might eventually also impede performance and productivity as a teleradiologist and lead to mistakes and misdiagnoses. Are you feeling that you spend way too much time working? If so, read our four essential tips to help you balance professional and private life.
📖 Author: Sandra Dietrich | OpenRad team
Work-life balance might no longer be measured in hours spent in the office and hours spent during leisure time—like a 50/50 concept. Hybrid work concepts and remote work are on the rise and can blur the boundary between work and home. However, no matter whether you are working at an office, co-working space or from home, the question is how to best balance your professional life as a teleradiologist against your private one. How can you find a good way to give your best work on the one hand and enjoy life with moments of joy, happiness and delight on the other?
1. Keep an eye on your worktime
The first thing you need to know is that after a certain point, additional work hours don’t necessarily translate into more effectiveness, productivity and additional value for your company. The equation “The more hours you spent working, the more productive you are.” doesn’t work. People who work without taking enough time to recover and to unplug from work will experience poor physical and mental health, life dissatisfaction and low job satisfaction.
According to the effort-recovery model, recovery is essential after a period of extended work to stay healthy and to perform well. Thus, make sure to make room for breaks, leisure activities and recovery. Here further are three tips how to:
2. Plan work & leisure goals, plus stick to them
Set clear and manageable daily tasks and goals. Start planning each task using realistic timeframes. Create a to-do list and set priorities for each task. Be realistic: How long does it take to accomplish your goals? Work effectively: How can you handle your tasks to keep deadlines? When you keep your deadlines, celebrate your achievements by treating yourself to something nice. Invite your family and friends, go out and have a good time.
Moreover, just as you plan work goals start planning quality leisure goals. Having fun and enjoyable activities to participate in your leisure time can help balance out your career if you feel stressed out. Make a list of activities you enjoy doing. Next, make a plan and schedule these activities into your week. Give yourself a structure and set a fixed time for these activities.
You like riding your bike, hiking or going to the coffee shop to indulge yourself with a nice cup of coffee? Make room for these activities and make it a habit to do them regularly. After a while you will realise that regular leisure activities are good for your mental well-being and thus for your work-life balance. If you are mentally well, you will have a more positive attitude, sleep better and be motivated to give your best at work.
After you’ve planned your work and leisure times, stick to the times you’ve set! Start working as you’ve planned. Keep your deadlines and keep track of your to-do list. However, don’t forget to unplug from work when it’s time to start your leisure activities. Turn off your work mobile phone, shut down your laptop and officially end your workday. This takes a lot of discipline, and it might be hard in the beginning. But it’s worth to stick to your plans to stay mentally and physically well.
3. Outsource errands
So, you’ve planned your leisure activities, but still need to run errands and fulfil household tasks. Instead of spending your leisure time doing the laundry, cleaning the house, preparing meals or going grocery shopping, why not outsource (some of) these errands?! This can help eliminate unnecessary stressors and focus on what is important for you. Here are some ideas on outsourcing household tasks to get a better work-life balance:
- Hire a cleaner to take care of your house or flat and to do the laundry to have more time to spend on leisure activities.
- Shop food and drinks online and get it delivered to your home to save valuable time.
- Prepare meals on the weekends and keep them in the fridge for lunch during the week or have lunch delivered to your home.
- Hire a nanny or ask grandparents and friends to take care of the kids when you want to spend time with your partner.
- Consider getting a dog sitter or gardener (if applicable).
4. Socialize with co-workers, family & friends
Don’t feel guilty for taking time off work and outsourcing errands to spend time with your partner, family and friends. Remember that taking time off is important for you to stay healthy, balanced and productive in the end. Instead of being afraid to miss out on something at work, be happy and arrange dates and social activities that make you feel good. Embrace work but also embrace your private life—and you will soon feel very balanced in your everyday life.
Are there any work-life balance tips you would like to add? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.
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