The concept of keeping a good work-life balance is written about almost endlessly. No one wants to become the person so engrossed in his or her work that he neglects his family, his friends, or the act of eating. Sadly, this does happen to many people, particularly those who take on new or larger roles in companies and feel the pressure to perform at a high level. Keeping a delicate balance between your work life and your home life is paramount not only to maintaining your sanity outside of work, but to boosting your productivity in it.
If you’ve kept up with my blog on BarryFischetto.org, you’ve probably learned a few things about me in a personal sense. I enjoy deep sea fishing and golf during the warmer months. During football season, I’m a rabid Giants fan and (still) firmly believe that they can win the NFC East despite some pretty mediocre showings lately. I also blog pretty regularly, if you haven’t noticed.
These are my hobbies, and every one of them helps me both personally and professionally.
Having hobbies, particularly creative outlets like painting or gardening naturally boosts your creativity. When you’re engaging in your hobbies outside of work, they become your creative outlet and help to spark creativity that otherwise could be lying dormant in your brain. A study published in Inc demonstrated that those who are more creative outside of work are able to then bring that creativity into the workplace–if you work in a field that requires a bit of creativity (many do), this will have a tangible impact on your day to day life.
Leaving work at work is much easier said than done. When you finally pull into your driveway and lumber into your house after a long day of work, the last thing you should be doing is opening up your computer to complete more work. This is, of course, a necessary evil in certain situations. But some of us engage in these activities simply because we feel the need to be productive even on weekends or evenings. Hobbies can help fulfill that need for productivity without bogging you down with work.
If you’re not feeling stressed at work then you’re more than likely in the minority. About 80% of people report feeling stressed in the workplace due to, well, the normal pressures of work. It’s not hard to see how a constant feeling of stress could negatively impact the work you’re doing in terms of both productivity and work quality. Having a hobby, even if it is sitting on your couch watching the Giants can help relieve stress and keep you in a more relaxed and laid back state. And while the Giants season has done little thus far to keep my blood pressure low, being able to relax on the couch and watch football every Sunday certainly helps me unwind.
Landing a Job
Maybe your focus isn’t performing better at your job, maybe it’s getting a job in the first place. According to the Guardian, having hobbies can actually help land you a position (or an interview). With more and more college graduates entering the workforce every year, and every passing year similarly being written into resumes of workers as another year of experience, employers often have turned to looking past qualifications. Your resume and cover letter reflect not just your job experience, but who you are as a person. If you’re applying for a job in customer service, employers will want to know how you spend your free time interacting with others.