Your job as a court reporter is super important to you. You have committed yourself to doing the best job you can, day-in and day-out. Sometimes this means working long days and juggling many deliverables.
You’ve been working as a local court reporter for a few years now and while you really love what you do, you’re starting to feel a bit tired. There are some days when you have to miss your children’s activities or have to cancel plans with family. After all, you’ve got a job to do.
Do either of these scenarios sound familiar? It’s so easy to get caught up in your job to the point where it becomes all-consuming. As a professional working in the legal system, you understand the responsibility that comes with the job and want to do your best. However, doing your best shouldn’t come at the expense of your health and wellness.
This is why we want to shine the light on the importance of work-life balance in the courts. Yes, your job as a court reporter is vitally important – but your health and wellness are much more important. In this post, which we urge you to share with your colleagues, we highlight why work-life balance is so important and give you some tips on how you can achieve this balance.
Key Reasons Why Work-Life Balance for Local Court Reporters Is So Important
Achieving a sustainable level of work-life balance is critical for your professional and personal well-being. Think of who you are when you’re stressed and overworked – angry, short-tempered, tired, run-down, sleepy, and distracted. Now think of who you are when you’ve got a good manageable work-life balance – happy, easy-going, lively, energetic, smiling, and engaged with others. Now, which person would you rather be?
When you’re looking at your schedule for the next few weeks, we want you to keep in mind these key reasons for why work-life balance for you, a local court reporter, is so important:
- Your health. The more you work, the less time you have for healthy eating, adequate sleep, daily exercise, and the downtime you need to give your brain a break. When you’re overworked, you become stressed and this puts a huge strain on your immune system. Soon enough, you’re struggling with colds, flus, fatigue, headaches, weight gain, and even depression.
- Your professionalism. When you’re juggling multiple deadlines and deliverables, it’s very hard to do your best work. You’re bouncing from one assignment to the next with very little time to review your work, to do the extra due diligence, or to meet with your colleagues. This can have a trickle-down impact into how well you perform in your career as a local court reporter.
- Your whole-self. It’s so easy to get caught up in work that you forget that there’s a giant world out there. One of the keys to being a well-rounded and healthy person is in having a balanced view and outlook. This means, doing more than work and being actively involved with your community, your family, your friends, and the news of the day. Remember, you won’t be working forever, so it’s critical you develop outside interests, maintain friendships, and stay engaged with the world.
How Local Court Reporters Can Achieve a Work-Life Balance
We admit that achieving work-life balance as a court reporter is not something you can achieve overnight. We also know that more and more research is being devoted to the level of work-life balance across all careers – another reason why it’s so important for you to make work-life balance a focus.
With some focused strategies and attention to how much time you’re spending at work versus how much time you’re spending at home and with friends and family – you can make great strides in your work-life balance.
These tips have worked for other court reporters and fellow legal professionals, so we hope they’ll also help you achieve a work-life balance:
- Use your vacation time. When was the last time you took a day off? Or even took a week off from work? It’s time to start using your vacation time. And when you take this vacation, don’t check your email, visit work-related websites, or chat with colleagues on SMS or Facebook. Take a real break from work.
- Take breaks during the work-day. It’s so important for you to give your brain a break through-out the day. We know that our level of concentration drops through-out the day. So, make sure you take a real lunch break – don’t eat at your desk or in a lunch room where you’re just talking about work. Get outside, go for a walk, read a book, and decompress. If it’s possible in the morning and afternoon, take a couple of breaks where you go for a walk, get a coffee, or call a friend for a chat.
- Talk to your colleagues. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with work, it’s very likely that your colleagues are experiencing the same stressors. Talk to your colleagues about how you can all get to a better level of work-life balance. Discuss and plan strategies that allow you to better balance your work loads and support one another.
- Learn to say no. You enjoy your job as a court reporter and want to do the best job you can. However, this doesn’t mean you should take on every task, project, and assignment. Start saying no when you can’t easily manage a new project or deadline. This allows you to better focus on the work you have and to maintain a higher level of professionalism.
Remember that while your job is important – it’s not the be-all and end-all of your life. You’re a whole person with wide interests outside the courtroom – make sure you’re able to achieve a work-life balance that allows you to enjoy all aspects of life.