Making the 9-5 work for you

Or in my case the 9-6, but lets not go there! Today I just wanted to revisit something I spoke about back in January on Finding Balance between work and some essential down time. If you’ve been reading this blog lately you’ll know I’ve had a lot on my plate between moving out of my parents house, buying my first flat, sorting out the mortgage, dating and having a social life. Its tough…

I’m a firm believer that if something is important to you then you will make time for it no matter what your working schedule is. I guess you have to prioritise and plan things in advance; oh isn’t adulthood so thrilling?! So how do you make 9-5 work for you? Here’s a few things that make me feel like I have more balance.

Do NOT live for the weekend

This rule could be changed to do not live for your days off, but I’m trying to keep it simple here. I have found that living for the weekend actually makes the working week much harder to bear. If all you do is focus on work during the week and then having the best time ever at the weekend then it is not really a healthy balance. 5 days of feeling a bit low and then 2 days of excitement. I am very lucky that I enjoy my job, but everyone has bad days or even weeks, so if you save all the fun for the weekend then you have much longer to wait until you get to actually enjoy yourself, and it will make the week feel longer.

Try to plan something for half way through the week that you really enjoy. Meet a friend for dinner, grab a drink with your partner, go to the gym, or even put on a face mask, grab a cuppa and watch your favourite Disney movie. It doesn’t have to be anything extravagant, just make sure you put some time aside for you.

work life balance

Leave work at work

I’m quite lucky with this one, my work all stays at work and I don’t have access to emails or our computer system from home, so when I walk out the door at 6, that is it. I’m done for the day. I know that’s not so realistic for everyone though, and you may have to be on call or available at all times. I’m no expert on this one but I’d guess the best way to deal with this is to switch off your work phone at any time that you are not expected to be on call. You have to step away and have a break, it will make you so much more productive when you are supposed to be on the job.

With my coaching I have to do a bit of work on my own schedule, and I think that’s the key word: schedule. Make one and stick to it. If you work from home or do freelance, get yourself organised so that you have set times for tasks and make sure you switch off when it’s time.

Have a moan

Generally I like to try stay positive but I actually think a good quick moan is key to keeping positive. If you’ve had a bad day, speak to a friend, family member or your partner, have a good rant. It’s ok! Let it all out, maybe someone will be able to offer some advice or you may just need them to listen to you for 10 minutes. Then once you’re done move on. Don’t dwell on the bad things, get it all out then find something fun to do!

relaxtreat time

Get yourself a hobby

I have my blog, swimming & going to the gym that I do just for me, no one else. These are things that I use to switch off and unwind while still feeling like I’m being productive; I absolutely hate to just sit around and do nothing (with the exception of the odd evenings on the sofa with a glass of wine and netflix), I feel like I get so much more out of my week if I keep busy.

So what about you? What do you like to do to make that 9-5 work for you and allow you that all important work-life balance? These are just the things that work for me, but everyone has their own idea of what works and as far as I’m concerned the only right answer is the one that makes you happy!



  1. May 8, 2017 / 11:13 am

    I totally agree with the whole not living for the weekend thing! I always try and plan something for Tuesday or Wednesday evening with my friends so I have something exciting on midweek. I find I get pretty down sometimes when I have zero plans for the week apart from work or studying! xo

    • emmasjoys
      May 8, 2017 / 3:54 pm

      It’s definitely the way forward! working all the time is so draining; since making an effort to be more sociable during the week I’m so much happier and have a slightly better balance between work and free time x

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