Tips on Achieving a Work-Life Balance

This article is an excerpt from the Shortform book guide to "Eat That Frog!" by Brian Tracy. Shortform has the world's best summaries and analyses of books you should be reading.

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Do you struggle to keep up with workplace expectations and often find yourself staying late or bringing your work home with you? Do you want to work on achieving a work-life balance?

Out of everything you do at work, there are likely to be three tasks that, in total, account for the majority of the value you contribute. Focusing on these tasks will make you more productive, resulting in more time for your personal life. This is the first step in achieving a work-life balance.

Keep reading for tips on how you can come closer to achieving a work-life balance.

Achieving a Work-Life Balance

Determining your three most important tasks for your job and the three most important things in your personal life can help you on your way to achieving a work-life balance and be happier and more satisfied.

Out of everything you do at work, there are likely to be three tasks that, in total, account for the majority of your workplace expectations. To perform your best and make your maximum contribution, you need to identify these key tasks and focus on them. Anything not directly related to these tasks should be put on the back burner, delegated, or eliminated.

Focusing on the few tasks that contribute the most to your company will increase your results and your value. When you’re worth more to your company, your compensation will increase. You may even find that you’re working fewer hours because you’re not wasting time chasing a lot of unimportant things.

Your Life Goals

Focusing on the most important workplace expectations will make you more productive, resulting in more time for your personal life. But there too, you need to identify what’s most important and work on achieving a work-life balance.

To help identify your personal priorities, try this exercise. In 30 seconds, write down your three most important goals in the following areas: a financial/career goal, a relationship/family goal, and a health/fitness goal. Then grade yourself to assess where you’re satisfied and where you want to improve.

Refine your goals by asking these additional questions (answer each in under 30 seconds):

  • What are my top three goals in each of the three areas—for example, what are my top health goals?
  • What are my top three personal and professional development goals?
  • What are my three biggest concerns?

The answers will tell you what matters most to you.

Time Management Is a Tool

Time management skills enable you to complete the important things at work, so you have time to do what brings you happiness and satisfaction in your personal life, bringing you closer to achieving a work-life balance.

Most happiness in life comes from having strong relationships with other people. You build strong relationships by spending time nurturing them. Being more efficient at work frees more time for you to spend with loved ones.

At work, the quality of your time counts; at home, it’s the quantity of time that counts most.

So when you’re at work, work the whole time. Don’t waste time—focus on what you need to accomplish to do well at your job and do it. When you’re efficient at work, you don’t have to stay late or take work home with you, cutting into your personal time.

That’s how you work on achieving a work-life balance that many people strive for. Your goal should be to do your best at work while not losing sight of the reasons you’re working: to have strong relationships and a satisfying life.

Tips on Achieving a Work-Life Balance

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Like what you just read? Read the rest of the world's best book summary and analysis of Brian Tracy's "Eat That Frog!" at Shortform.

Here's what you'll find in our full Eat That Frog! summary:

  • What it means to eat a frog
  • How your daily distractions get in the way of doing important work first
  • How to make a habit of doing the most important thing first, every day

Hannah Aster

Hannah graduated summa cum laude with a degree in English and double minors in Professional Writing and Creative Writing. She grew up reading books like Harry Potter and His Dark Materials and has always carried a passion for fiction. However, Hannah transitioned to non-fiction writing when she started her travel website in 2018 and now enjoys sharing travel guides and trying to inspire others to see the world.

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