The perfect balance

We look at achieving the right balances in your career and the reasons why it is so important

Deadline pressures as we head closer to year-end reporting is just one reasons accountancy and finance professionals struggle to balance their jobs with family, friends and other interests. Figuring out how to push your professional career forward while still taking the time to enjoy life can be a challenge.

It is important to find harmony in and out of the workplace, not only at the time of the year but also throughout your working life. Achieving a successful work/life balance will ensure that you don’t burn out during peak-times of the year.

There are a number of work/life balance tips that will help you keep the momentum going in your accountancy and finance career while still taking the time for the other important things in life.

It can be tempting to check your emails out of hours, however; always being ‘on’ won’t provide the opportunity to unwind. As much as possible, cut the tether with the office when you’re not there.

Technology timeouts

Make bringing work home the exception, not the rule. And get into the practice of taking technology timeouts.

A smartphone can boost productivity, but it can become a double-edged sword if you give colleagues and clients reason to expect near-constant accessibility.

It requires a willingness to change your habits and the self-discipline to stick with those healthier routines.

Many busy professionals fall into the trap of believing they cannot afford to take time off. But can you afford not to? Whether you escape to the tropics or do a ‘staycation’, stepping away to recharge is critical. Decompressing has a way of putting challenging work-related woes in perspective.

Phil Sheridan, managing director, Robert Half UK, says: ‘Working a flexible schedule can often allow you to improve your work/life balance as you can often avoid peak commuting times by arriving early or working from home.

‘If you are considering asking for time off, now might be the time as more than a third of all UK businesses have increased the remote working opportunities for these employers in the last three years.’

‘There’s no one-size-fits-all fix, but setting appropriate boundaries, living in alignment with your values, and being intentional about how and where you spend your time will surely help.’

Plan ahead

Lorraine Twist, Michael Page Finance, adds: ‘A good work/life balance is essential to maintain a healthy, happy lifestyle and it’s important to manage this balance. Ensure you plan your calendar around busy periods at work so you can prioritise your work responsibilities and tasks. This will minimise working late nights/weekends and will allow an active and full social life.

‘If you have exams coming up, try and take some time off work to revise for them – you don’t want to overload yourself by balancing both. Ensure your employer is aware that you are juggling both, they may be able to relieve some of your work load or offer more flexible hours if necessary.’

"Whether you escape to the tropics or do a ‘staycation’, stepping away to recharge is critical. Decompressing has a way of putting challenging work-related woes in perspective"