Fatigue, stress, burn out and relationship problems are just a few of the consequences of having little or no work-life balance. Find out what you can do to reclaim more â??me time’.

Often weeks can go by before we realise how little time weâ??ve actually spent doing the things we love, and how much extra time weâ??ve spent working â?? be it in the evenings or over weekends. What happened to the balance?!

The scary thing is that weâ??ve become so used to working this much that it might even feel normal. If it sounds like weâ??re talking about you, then itâ??s time to even things out.

Here are five things you can do to to create a better work-life balance…

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1. Start delegating tasks.

Weâ??re not suggesting that you dump all of your responsibilities on someone else. Rather, weâ??re suggesting that you take on only what you know you can complete in a reasonable amount of time, and assign the rest to colleagues who you can trust to get the work done.  

2. Learn to say â??noâ??

If youâ??re working an insane number of hours, the chances are that you say â??yesâ?? every time someone asks you to do something. If a task is very important or requires your input, then of course you need to take it on. However, if something can wait until next week, or if itâ??s something a colleague can assist with, then hand it over or put it on the back burner until you can give it your full attention.  

3. Make sure you get enough down time

Sure itâ??s easier said than done, but itâ??s vital if you want to reduce stress levels and keep your sanity intact. Thirty minutes down time at the end of a day is all you need to help you unwind. Whether you go for a beach walk, join a gym class, read a book or sit in the garden and meditate – as long as you come away from it feeling calmer and preferably with a smile on your face. 

4. Are you wasting valuable â??meâ?? time?

On top of a heavy workload, there are inevitably hundreds of things that still need doing at home. Washing, cleaning the house and running errands â?? they all take up time. Consider the relative cost and convenience of hiring someone to help you with these things. If you think you canâ??t afford to hire someone to help clean your house, consider the time it takes and what you could otherwise be doing for yourself – the value is suddenly much clearer.

5. Make time for family and friends

Your spouse, children and loved ones are often the first to start feeling neglected when youâ??re in over-drive work mode. And letâ??s be honest, itâ??s not fair â?? especially since theyâ??re also your support structure. Make a point of enjoying dinner or a date out with your spouse a few times a week, spending quality time with the kids, or organising an evening out with your friends. Quality time with loved ones puts everything into perspective.    

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While All4Women endeavours to ensure health articles are based on scientific research, health articles should not be considered as a replacement for professional medical advice. Should you have concerns related to this content, it is advised that you discuss them with your personal healthcare provider.