“If you’re not happy, you’re not going to be happy even doing things that you love doing. It’d feel like a chore. I never want work to feel like a chore.’’

This is Rihanna talking to Interview Magazine, having always been described as a pop star with remarkable work ethic, the article has been picked up as a great example of how to achieve a better work life balance.
“I’ve made little things a big deal, like going for a walk or going to the grocery store. …. Just like I nurture my businesses, I need to nurture this as well… On my calendar, we now have the infamous ‘P’, which means personal days. This is a new thing.”
Great advice!
According to the OECD, countries like the UK, US and Australia rank amongst the lowest ranked countries for work life balance, measured by average working hours. Gallup estimate that 31% of us are stressed and 24% of us are suffering from tiredness or burnout. We are all aware of the increased pressure to always be ‘at work’ as technology allows us to be constantly connected. Many of us can’t or don’t switch off.  In a BBC article this week:
“Email overload is causing people to get ill,” says Cary Cooper, organisational psychology professor at Manchester University.  His research has found that higher email load is associated with higher workload stress.
But how many of us are taking the same steps as Rihanna?  I can hear your scepticism, ‘she’s a multi-millionaire pop artist, living in luxury, how can her life possibly compare to mine?’  Well it can.  In her decision to make changes to nurture herself and with her ‘p’ days, she has found answers to achieve work life balance from inside herself. By talking about the need to nurture herself and being aware of her personal happiness she has developed a strong relationship with herself.   We can all do this.
When we work with clients achieving a better work/life balance is a common objective, along with

  • Have less anxiety and panic.
  • Be less of a pleaser – I say yes to everything.
  • Manage my reactions better and over-analyse less.
  • Put less pressure on myself.
  • Feel more confident about my strengths – accept myself.

All these things are linked, as clients who have worked with us know.
For those of you yet to engage with Courageous Success, the fix that we all want to these objectives, lies within us all. Here are some steps to move you forwards;

  1. Choose to fix it yourself, regardless of circumstances.
    You may want to control your email by undertaking the ‘zero-inbox’ route, or re-frame how you feel about your inbox, it’s up to you to do it.  Take responsibility for your own strength and creating your own experience.
  2. Make time for you. Create rhythms and routines in your week that re-energise you, it may be time for exercise, a work cut off time, enjoying making the evening meal.  Find out what matters to you most and make that time. Give yourself permission.
  3. Connect with yourself and have a positive conversation. Look within for your thoughts and strength.   Be positive about you and remind yourself about this regularly.  Don’t waste energy beating yourself up.
  4. Decide to remove your self-consciousness whilst being your real self. Don’t waste energy guessing or worrying what others may think of you. Be confident in you – see step 3!
  5. Be like Rihanna!