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3 Easy Ways to Unplug After the Work Day
We increasingly hear the terms “work-life balance” or “work-life integration” thrown around in the discussions of lives and company culture. The ideal is debated amongst organizational psychologists and employers and sought after by many who seek to be as effective and fulfilled as possible in every area of their lives.
Not so coincidentally, this conversation around the meaning of the elusive “work-life balance” has grown immensely since the rise in technology. What gives us greater opportunity to connect globally, work remotely, or take a conference call on our commute has also allowed us to make ourselves available at all hours of the day.
This makes it all the more difficult to separate the blurred lines of when work stops and when our personal time begins. Whether it’s the weekend or the end of the work day, it can be hard to shut your mind off to the responsibilities for your career.
But, it’s important to take time for yourself and all the things in your life that allow you to feel fulfilled. So if you’re struggling to clear your head and unplug when five o’clock hits, try some of these tactics to help you relax and unwind.

3 Easy Ways to Unplug After the Work Day

1. Write Down Your To-Dos and Thoughts

Don’t knock what may seem to be old school pen and paper. There is power in physically writing things down to increase your productivity and give your mind the clarity it’s so desperately seeking when you clock out.
It’s no secret that our minds are bombarded with messages each day, especially in the digital age, and that noise can have a big impact on your focus. To help you focus on other things outside of work,  do a “brain dump” before you leave.
Write out your to-dos for the next day and those random reminders rolling around in your head when it comes to working. A notebook, a post-it, whatever, get it down on paper and it will free up space in your mind. That way, when you walk out the door you can focus on the things you enjoy outside of work and not that meeting reminder you need to send when you get in the next morning.

2. Carve Out Time For Post-Work Fun

Dedicate time and commit to activities you love to do for after the work day. Get in on an evening yoga class, grab a drink with a friend at happy hour, or even just make a date with yourself and a good book you’ve been meaning to read.
Make time for yourself and put it on your calendar. Really! Just by including it in your daily routine can help you stick to it. By prioritizing time for things you love to do after the work day you’ll have something to look forward to. All the more reason to stop checking your email or close that laptop.
[RELATED: Work-Life Balance: How Do You Unwind After a Busy Work Week?]

3. Literally Unplug

Sometimes it’s easiest to set boundaries for yourself and simply step away from the computer.
Are you notorious for glancing at your phone for every work email that comes through? Or do you feel like your laptop has to be with you at all times?
More often than not, these aren’t requirements of the job, but pressures we put on ourselves. If this sounds familiar, determine an area where you can unplug from work. Maybe you don’t need to have your personal phone connected to your work email. Or stick to your routine and commit to leaving your desk by a certain time every night.
Because if you’re being honest with yourself, most emails outside of the 9 to 5 can wait until the next day. Plus, you deserve a little R&R.

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