It’s only natural to want to make a great impression at work, particularly when your career is just beginning. But you’ll only sabotage your future prospects if you burn the candle at both ends. Here are four tips for getting your work done on time while still maintaining a good work-life balance.
1. Time management
The 2014 Australian Work and Life Index revealed that more than half of full-time workers feel rushed at work. For accounting and tax professionals, this can become a major issue during the busy end-of-financial-year season.
You can avoid this trap by creating a prioritised task list each morning. This will make you better at setting goals and priorities, and you’ll also feel the buzz of accomplishment each time you tick off an item.
Taking on as much as possible might earn you points in the short term, but it’s also the surest way to burn yourself out. The delegation goes hand in hand with good time management – it’s hard to achieve one without the other.
Start by looking at your key strengths. If you’re good at leadership, ask if you can do more project-management tasks, leaving the number crunching to others. And don’t be shy about seeking help – asking questions shows you are willing to learn and improve.
3. Set boundaries
The Work and Life Index also found that nearly a third of full-time employees regularly sacrifice personal time for work duties. There will be periods when the team has to clock up extra hours to meet a tight deadline, but if you’re always the last person to leave the office, you may be putting your health and relationships at risk. Remember that a good career isn’t just about a good salary – it should also give you time to enjoy the rewards.
4. Switch off
Just as your phone’s battery needs to be recharged regularly, so do your own. After you leave work, let calls go to voicemail and try not to check your email until the next day unless you’re monitoring an urgent issue. Downtime at work is also very important. You can keep alert and productive by spending at least 10 minutes every hour away from your desk – preferably outdoors where you can get some exercise and sunlight.
Your life shouldn’t be all work and no play. Maintaining a good work-life balance is simply good for your health – and your career.
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