We’re not calling this “How to Maintain a Productive and Enjoyable Work-Life Balance” because the term work-life balance just doesn’t encompass everything this post is about.
We’re calling it “life balance” because “work-life balance” makes it seem like half of your life is work and the other half is life. Life includes so much. We’re talking about how to create balance in all aspects of your life, not just balancing work.
One of the challenges of being an adult is keeping your life balanced. Having time to do everything you want to and need to is simply impossible.
Lack of time is one of the regular reasons people choose not to pursue an activity, especially when it comes to fitness.
What can you do to create a life balance that works?
We’re still pretty new to being adults, but we’ve worked hard to prioritize what matters to us and make time for it.
Here’s a little bit of background so you know why maintaining a life balance isn’t always easy for us. Evan is a full time student taking more than the typical 12 units per semester. I have a full time job as a legal assistant working anywhere from 8.5 to 10.5 hours a day Mon-Fri.
So we’re not just sitting around with time on our hands. Yet we still manage to:
- Sleep 7-9 hours a night
- Go to the gym for 1.5 hours a day, 6 days a week
- Complete a blog post each week and everything that goes along with blogging
- Work on stock trading and learn more techniques for it everyday
- Clean the entire apartment weekly
- Have time to relax together
- Cook all of our meals/meal prep
- Take care of our dog
- Stay caught up with homework and even get ahead on assignments (if you’re a student, check out this post on how to get great grades)
Now realistically, there are a few things that have gone by the wayside. We don’t have as much time for reading as we would like. I’m not as active on social media for the blog as I was before I started working. But honestly, those are about the only things we’re missing out on right now. We get enough socialization at work/school and at the gym, and our families live in other states, so we don’t feel the need to set out time for social engagements.
Here’s where we lay out our weekly routines. I’m sure your schedule is completely different, but maybe you can get some inspiration or ideas from how we manage our time.
Monday Through Friday
6:15 We wake up
6:20-6:30 M gets face and hair ready for work
6:30-6:45 We make breakfast, usually eggs and cereal/oatmeal, and coffee
6:45-7:05 We eat breakfast
7:05-8:30 E trades stocks
7:05-7:25 M catches up on the blog Instagram
7:25-7:50 M washes breakfast dishes, walks dog, gets dressed, and goes to work
8:30-10:30 E does homework and gets ready for school
8:10-5:30 M works
11:00-4:00 E is at school
5:30-5:45 E cooks dinner or heats up leftovers
5:50-6:20 We eat dinner, drink supplements, and change for the gym
6:35-8:00 We work out at the gym
8:10-9:00 We drink the rest of our supplements and shower
9:00-9:45 Chill time
9:45-10:00 We get ready for bed and walk Chili
10:30-11:00 We fall asleep at some point.
8:00-8:30 Usually wake up at 8 depending on how late we went to bed on Friday.
Other than when we wake up, we don’t really have specific times we do everything.
On Saturdays we go grocery shopping, clean the apartment, meal prep, and usually cook a more complicated meal than on the weekdays.
Again, we usually wake up at 8 and don’t have a set schedule.
The things we accomplish on Sundays are writing the next week’s blog post, editing and uploading it to the website, working on homework, hanging out, cooking another more time consuming dinner (sometimes), and going to the gym.
So there you have it. We don’t even have strict schedules we abide by on the weekends.
We are human and don’t always get everything done every single week. For example, yesterday we didn’t do all the cleaning, but we did twice as much laundry as usual. But more often than not, we get everything done that we want to.
These are a Few Tips That Have Helped Us Maintain Our Life Balance
- As we say any many of our posts, creating and sticking to routines are extremely beneficial and save you from having to think too much. You just get the muscle memory.
- Pick priorities. No one can do everything. Choose what matters to you and make it happen. For us, staying healthy and being fit is important. (If you value that too, here’s a link to a post with some ideas on how you can live a healthy lifestyle.)
- Use a planner. If you’re new to managing your own time, say a freshman in college, writing down everything you need to do in a day or a week is helpful because you know exactly what it is and when it needs to be done. We use planners for work and school, but not for everything else in life. We do rely heavily on them though, so if you find they work well for managing everything in your life, that’s awesome.
- If you’re a couple, don’t focus too much on whether you’re each putting in 50-50. I almost always walk the dog. Evan is almost always in charge of dinner on the weekdays. We don’t even pay attention to whether one of us is doing more than the other. We both do what needs to be done so we can enjoy our life together.
- Realize that sometimes life happens and don’t be too hard on yourself if something unexpected comes up and you can’t accomplish everything you planned on.