Striking a healthy work-life balance can be difficult. Sometimes you are completely unaware of an imbalance until someone points it out to you, or an event happens that forces the issue to be addressed – such as your health breaking down, or missing family events, etc.

It is often when you are on your holidays that it becomes particularly obvious – there you are sipping your Mojito on a sunny beach and checking your work emails!

You might love your job as an Accountant, Finance Manager or Engineer, and are working really hard to succeed in it, but if you’re not setting boundaries and making the most of life outside of work, it won’t be healthy for you.

You need to be able to strike a balance between your work/career aspirations, and your health, family and hobbies.

Here are 5 easy steps to help manage your life at home while increasing your productivity at work:

  1. The all-important Sleep! Start your day refreshed and positive after a good night’s sleep. Getting at least 8 hours of sleep per night is essential, especially if you are commuting long distances to work. Lack of sleep will quickly zap your energy reserves leading to poor concentration and poor performance at work.
  2. Ban the smartphone, buy an alarm clock and go easy on the TV! For those of you who work in IT, Software Development, Administrator roles, or anyone whose jobs involve working with a computer all day, it’s important to take a break from the screen. A UK survey published in July this year found that the average person spends a decade of their lives in front of a television. A recent Microsoft study showed that 8 seconds was on average the longest amount of time 2000 participants could concentrate on a task before helplessly switching their attention to another task. So technology is having an impact on how we work and also on how we sleep. Research is now proving that smartphones and tablets can disrupt sleep – they emit what is known as “blue” light, which tricks your brain into thinking that its morning, and causes your mind to race. Having your smartphone as your alarm clock poses a problem as it tempts you into checking your social media or work emails before you go to sleep. The Solution – buy an alarm clock! Try to get into a routine of switching off your mobile up to 1 hour before you go to sleep, leaving it somewhere away from your bedroom to resist the temptation to check it.
  3. Plan your meals and eat your greens! Eating out and grabbing lunch on the run every day not only adds up in your pocket but also on your belly. Planning your meals and preparing food in advance will help you to be more organised and free up more time for work, family, friends and hobbies. Bulk food shopping in advance is a great way to save money and ensures you eat a healthier diet. You don’t need to be a Scientist or a Process Scheduler to achieve this! A healthy diet will lead to a more healthy and vibrant you at work.
  4. Get active! Love it or hate it, exercise is, and will always be, your best friend. It will make you look and feel great. Your productivity levels at work will soar, and you will become a more positive, energetic team player. Exercise also has a positive impact on the outcome of Psychometric Assessments or Aptitude Tests at work. Check out a local fitness class or gym and get started today.
  5. Try something new! Now that you’re super-efficient with your time, why not look at broadening your horizons. Consider your next positive move – is it time to re-evaluate your career? Were you too busy to go for that promotion? Or to look for a new job to further your career?

As you can see, striking a good work-life balance is important both for your personal life and your career in the long term. For more career advice and jobs in Dublin, Cork, Galway, Sligo and Athlone, check out

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Niall Murray

Managing Director

Collins McNicholas Recruitment & HR Services