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Achieve Life-Work Balance: How to Build a Schedule That Works For You

Updated: Apr 25




Does your schedule always feel out of control? Do you feel like there are never enough hours in the day to accomplish all your tasks? If so, you’re not alone. According to a study in 2019, roughly 60% of Americans said they had poor work-life balance. Yikes! In this month’s blog, I’ll share some tangible strategies for reclaiming your time and building a schedule that allows you to experience more life-work harmony. 


Change Your Thinking


The first thing I always invite my coaching clients to do is shift their perspective. Instead of referring to work-life balance, I encourage them to strive for life-work harmony. Why? Because when we put the word work first we are subconsciously telling our brains that work should be our number one priority. Not to mention, using the word balance. Imagine yourself balancing on one foot. For most of us, that’s probably not exactly the easiest thing to do. That image usually brings up thoughts of struggle and makes us think that if work and life aren’t 50/50 we’re doing something wrong. What I love about the word harmony is it takes a more holistic approach and reminds us there are many things that are integral to overall wellbeing: personal relationships, health, hobbies, etc. 


It might seem like a trivial thing, but changing your mindset is a foundational step. Even though you haven’t touched your schedule yet, your brain is automatically going to look for opportunities to create a more harmonious existence between life and work, just by changing the way you think and talk about this topic. That was easy!  


Building a Schedule that Works for You


Now let’s dive into my five practical tips for revamping your schedule. Keep in mind, everyone prefers to track their schedule differently. Whether you use the calendar app in your phone, a physical planner, or something else doesn’t matter. Select what works best for you and don’t be afraid of a little trial and learning along the way. 


  1. Identify Your Priorities: Start by clarifying what matters most to you. Take some time to reflect on your values, goals, and aspirations. What do you want to achieve in your career? What relationships are most important to you? What activities bring you joy and fulfillment? By identifying your priorities, you can make more intentional choices about how you spend your time. I’m sure you’ll notice that these questions are focused on both personal and professional aspects of your life. 

  2. Start With Non-Negotiables: We all have those things we simply can’t live without in our life. Those tasks and activities need to go in the calendar first. Once they’re accounted for everything else can be added in and built around those key ingredients for a harmonious life. 

  3. Ditch Detractors: We all have guilty pleasures or things that take eat up our free time. The key is to identify the time-stealing activities that are preventing you from achieving your priorities and start regulating them. Are you watching too much TV, going out with friends too often, scrolling endlessly on TikTok, or gossiping at the office water cooler? These detractors are robbing you of your free time, having space for your non-negotiables, and being more efficient at work.  

  4. Delegate and Outsource: You don't have to do it all yourself. Instead, delegate tasks at work and at home to lighten your load to free up time for activities that matter most to you. Whether it's hiring a virtual assistant, outsourcing household chores, or collaborating with colleagues on projects, don't be afraid to ask for help when you need it. 

  5. Stay Flexible: While having a structured schedule is important, it's also essential to remain flexible and adaptable. Life is unpredictable, especially when children are involved. You can count on an unexpected event to arise that requires you to adjust your plans. (Usually it’s one of my kids calling me from school to ask me to bring their lunch that’s still sitting on the counter.) Instead of rigidly adhering to your schedule, and getting frustrated when something goes awry, be willing to make changes as needed while still prioritizing your well-being and overall balance.

Achieving a balance between work and life can seem like an insurmountable goal when project deadlines are approaching, your social life is calling, and bills are stacking up, but you don’t have to feel overwhelmed and stretched thin any longer. If you follow these tips, you’ll be able to build a schedule that works for you and live a more fulfilling life. 


Karin Freeland is a certified Life Reinvention Coach focused on helping women transform their lives and achieve their dreams by using the lessons she learned in her 15 years in the corporate sector. Award-winning author of “Grab Life by the Dreams “and podcast host of “Rock Your Reinvention,” learn more about her and her company Karin Freeland Coaching & Consulting, LLC at www.karinfreeland.com.


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