When you think of striking the perfect balance between your work and the rest of your life, technology will usually conjure images of hindrance. The technology we use can sometimes be seen as an obstacle to a healthy life. Mobile phones can steal our attention, our work emails can be pulled out during family time, and social media can sometimes do more to make us feel disconnected than connected to those around us. Having a poor work-life balance can lead to physical health problems and even anxiety and depression. But technology in our everyday lives can actually help us strike a healthier balance. Here are some of the ways you can use everyday tech to help you manage your priorities effectively and improve your overall well-being.
Integrate wellness into your routine
Work can often blend into the motion blur of our personal lives, and while this can seem subtle and insignificant at times, it’s very important to be able to set boundaries between the two. That said, there are ways you can integrate wellness into your work hours using everyday technology, which can help your productivity, creativity, and mental well-being over time.
Your mental and physical health can see a very positive impact from regular meditation and mindfulness practices. Apps such as Headspace, Calm and The Mindfulness App offer guided meditations and mindfulness techniques that can offer well-being benefits and minimise anxiety when practiced. For the best results, you can integrate daily meditations into your schedule. By dedicating 10 minutes or so every day to mindfulness and meditation, you can see these benefits in your everyday working and personal life – you can even sleep more easily by practicing meditation before bed.
Maintain your fitness
Another way to introduce wellness into your routine is through wearable technology such as smartwatches and fitness trackers. In our busy work lives we can often juggle so many priorities that our fitness might be left as a second thought. Maintaining your fitness level is incredibly important in regulating sleep patterns, positively affecting your mood, and improving resilience. By tracking your fitness levels and sleep patterns with smart watches, you can manage your workout regime and prevent your fitness from ever becoming an after-thought.
Manage your productivity
The advent of cloud technology has meant that we are able to collaborate on large scale projects in our organisations, regardless of time zone differences or busy schedules.
Google have seamlessly integrated email, schedules and calendars, collaboration, document sharing, video conferencing and instant messaging across their platforms – allowing teams to effectively coordinate and execute their projects. Software like Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Teams can communicate to effectively merge emails, calendars, meeting organisation, document sharing and conference calling into one unified, collaborative experience.
Tailor your tech to you
It’s important to keep in mind that you should choose the right selection of software to suit your business, colleagues and employees. The software and technology you choose should allow your team to work flexibly and collaboratively and reflect the workflow that most benefits your working format.
If you have a large team or department that needs to be constantly collaborating with updates on various projects, you could benefit from cloud-based project management software like Atlassian’s Confluence. A smaller team on the other hand might only require a leaner tool such as Trello. Some teams may need a focus on sharing visuals remotely and would benefit from a whiteboard tools such as Miro and Whimsical to display concepts and draft designs collaboratively. It all comes down to understanding the needs of your team and which software speaks to it specifically.
Learn to switch off
It’s easier said than done but switching off of ‘work mode’ is pivotal in getting the proper work-life balance in life. While technology often keeps us tied to our jobs after hours, it can also be the mechanism we use to connect to our lives outside of work.
Simple daily habits like listening to your favourite Spotify playlist or podcast on your car ride home or streaming your favourite TV shows on the train can reset your frame of mind and allow you to wind down.
If you’re having trouble focusing or are stressed out, you can even try apps like the psychologist-approved, mood-training Happify, which involves simple games and gratitude prompts to readjust your mindset and overcome any negative thoughts.