Use Technology in Smarter Ways For Human Life Expectancy
How does the way we use technology, influence our work-life balance and human life expectancy? It’s not just a matter of willpower required, to not frequently check our devices. Especially since our brains are hardwired to be curious about the latest social information, that emails and other notifications bring. An alert might mean you received an invitation from a friend. Or you got good feedback from your boss, or it might be an ad from Pottery Barn. You want to know about the good news and even more about the bad ones. So you keep checking. Because our ego wants to be entertained! This habit puts us under permanent stress, which poisons our minds. Finally, the price we pay for it is mental burnout.
We need spaces where we don’t check our incoming messages on our phones and computers. Start by reinforcing the norm of not having phones at the dinner table. Neither during family time nor meetings. Simply by limiting email and social media checking to scheduled times during the day. That will give our mind time to calm down and relax, or work concentrated and effective on our muse.
The technology itself isn’t good nor bad. Email, social media, and instant messaging are tools. Nevertheless, we need to learn to use it more effectively. A hammer can be essential for certain tasks. But you wouldn’t walk around all day banging it away at everything.
Establish Boundaries And Predictable Time Off
There used to be physical and time boundaries that helped keep work and life apart. We need to reinstate boundaries that we respect for ourselves.
Adding to the problem is “on-demand” scheduling. This is increasingly used by retailers and other companies that employ hourly workers. Sophisticated algorithms create the schedule based on predictions of when that store might be busy. Employees might know their schedule a week ahead of time or two days ahead. The irregularity makes time off difficult to plan.
While there are many of these structural problems that need to be fixed, you can act on your behalf. Just by using the vacation days you already have. And by staying logged off all devices and platforms during leisure time.
A 'Flexible Schedule' Doesn’t Mean Always Working
Working for a company that allows flexible hours and remote work access might mean that you can leave the office any time you want or need to. For example at 3 p.m. for a doctor’s appointment. At least if you can make up for those last couple of hours of work from home. It doesn’t mean that you need to be available all night long. You need to establish with your colleagues, what they should expect from you,
Mindset Changes Are Required
Most individual employees are in a tough spot when it comes to work-life balance. The best-case scenario when you’re in a position, where you feel overloaded because it exhausts you, is to quit that job. And then, find a muse that feeds your passion and work in that field. But for most people, that does not seem to be a realistic option. You need to develop a mindset of abundance for that. A good way to do so is to join the 21 days of abundance challenge.
Have Productive Conversation With Colleagues
To communicate which of your values your colleagues shall respect, while you’re working remotely, is your responsibility. Find a mutually beneficial goal that serves both parties. Such as recognizing, that both you and your coworkers want to meet deadlines. Because reliability is a value, everybody can agree on it.
It helps everyone to work on the project sustainably. When having that conversation, acknowledge good intentions behind the values of your colleagues. To honor them, express the effect those common values have on the productivity of the team.
That doesn't mean, you have to work always. Just find and use the time, in which you are the most productive. And make that your primary working hours. Your manager or a coworker may email at 11 p.m. because they want to get a particular task off their plate. But they may not expect you to necessarily answer at all hours of the night.
Work-Life Balance is a Fallacy
By the end of the day, all of the "technical solutions" above, are only treating the symptoms. They try to compromise an unsatisfying situation with rules and regulations. But, if you are working in the field of your passion, you will not get exhausted anymore. Because it will feel, like not working anymore. It is just being in the flow, at least the vast majority of the time. And to get into that flow, you need to know your purpose in life.
Purpose in Life Benefits Human Life Expectancy
Having a purpose in life, a dream, clear life targets, a mission, and a vision. And living according to them, by "working" in that field. It turns it into a muse. So, it does not feel like work anymore. Because, you would love to do that, even if you would not get paid for it at all. But you allow life to pay you plentiful for that. This is one of the pillars that extend your life expectancy dramatically!