Counterintuitive Thoughts to Make Your Work-Life Balance Better Than Ever

Work-life balance is especially important if you’ve been feeling overwhelmed, have low energy and are experiencing aches or pain in your body.

That’s why I’m sharing one of the most powerful ways to shift your thinking on work-life balance today-so you can save time and energy and get to rest and recharge.

You’re going to be really surprised by what I have to tell you today about work and rewards.

In the past well-meaning people have suggested that to be motivated to do a job that you don’t really want to do, whether it’s boring, unpleasant or difficult, you should plan a special reward for yourself when you get that job done.

Seems right, doesn’t it? Has anybody out there done this?

You have to do a task that is challenging or tedious, it could be work related, like writing a repot, or home related like cleaning the house. You decide that after you do it, you’ll give yourself a special treat.

Anything from a small reward like a break to read and relax or maybe a massage, or even something bigger, like a trip or vacation.

This might seem like a good way to motivate yourself, but the truth is scary- this re-wires your brain to like the task less than ever, and to value the reward that you’re giving yourself over doing the work.

Here’s why. When you make the reward something unrelated to the task, you’re telling yourself that the hard, less enjoyable work is not in itself rewarding.

Instead you reinforce the idea that the task is difficult and unpleasant and that the reward is way more desirable. In fact, you’ll wish that you didn’t have to do that work, that you could just enjoy yourself all the time.

It re-wires you brain so that the next time you have to do that kind of work you’ll be even less motivated and perhaps want an even bigger reward.

This can make you really start to dislike your job!

Here’s what you should do instead- focus on the good results of doing the work, the intrinsic rewards.

For a work report it could be that by doing it there’s more clarity on the subject and so you have a better understanding of the best way to do things going forward. It could even be getting a paycheck or new clients.

For cleaning the house you could focus on how good it feels to have a calm and enjoyable environment where you can relax, undistracted by the clutter that would otherwise be around you.

So next time you tackle something difficult, boring, or unpleasant, take a minute or two to make the result of doing that job very clear to yourself. What does doing that job actually do for you.

That way you’ll be rewarded just by doing what needs to be done. And you’ll feel good about doing what needs to be done and learn to dig into your work.

Your brain is going to become wired to feel rewards from that type of activity.

As for rewards, reframe that as self-care. You deserve to have time off for fun or relaxation, it’s an important part of work-life balance and it makes you a more productive person if you’re happy and well rested.

Frances Adamson is a Yoga Therapist and Health Coach

Located in Durham Region
20 Kingswood Dr. COurtice ON, L1E 1G2