Top Tips for Balancing a Social Life with Work
Working in shift has a lot of pros and cons that go with it, as any healthcare worker who started in a hospital or currently works in one can tell you. On the one hand, it's great to technically have four days off each week, but on the other hand, it often doesn't feel like it. A significant amount of a clinician's time goes into preparing for those three shifts.
To make the most of your free time, here are some tips to help you balance your shift work and social life.
1. Planning in Advance
The most important element to finding a balance is planning ahead. This planning includes vacation days, your sleep, and social events. No one can fit everything in, so plan ahead for the things you definitely don't want to miss. Also, know it's ok to say no to plans. It's in your best interest not to over-schedule yourself.
If you want to take a vacation, planning it pretty well in advance is important.
2. Make Yourself a Priority
Schedule time for yourself. You have to put yourself first so that you have the energy and love to give to others. Scheduling time for yourself can be something small, like 30 minutes of exercise, meditation, enjoying a special meal, etc. It doesn't have to be all day. Just 10-15 minutes of self-care every day can have a positive impact on your mental health.
3. Building Limitations
Having limitations between work, friends and family is really important. Don't be afraid to let people know when you're free and when you're not. Limitations allow us to use our time more efficiently and give us more energy for the things we really want to do. When people see what you need and you can communicate your needs, they are much more attainable.
4. Bring in Change
Go out every day, even if it's just for a few minutes at a time. Enjoy the nice weather while you can. Bask in the sun! It lifts your spirits and rejuvenates your soul, especially after working three nights in a row and missing the sunshine most of those days. It's a nice reset and the warmth of the sun really warms your soul and boosts your energy levels.
5. Utilize Long Weekends to the Fullest
Make the most of long weekends for fun trips and plans. Shift work often leaves us with long weekends to plan quick trips. If you find it difficult to make these plans with those who work five days a week, plan a few weekends when your significant other, family, or friends can take a three-day weekend with you. Or maybe you can make some plans for a long weekend with friends from work who share your schedule and also need an escape.
The idea of work-life balance has become increasingly popular over the last decade, with employees looking for organizations that can accommodate this desire. It is the idea that work and life can coexist in a balanced way. Now that 2023 is near, it is time for us all to leave this concept behind. Why? Read to know more: We Are Canceling Work-Life Balance. Are We? (directshifts.com)