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10 Tools to Help You Maintain Work-Life Balance

Scott Gerber
Scott Gerber

These tools will help you maintain work-life balance as a busy entrepreneur.

Being an entrepreneur can often feel all-consuming, but that's all the more reason to implement work-life balance hacks to keep you from getting too overwhelmed. For every phone call, spend five minutes meditating; for every business trip, schedule time for family.

Apps and tools can simplify this balancing act by providing resources and reminders that allow you (or force you!) to step away from the office. Simply using an alarm clock to close out the day will remind you when it's time to go home, while a messaging app like Slack gives you the confidence to relax as you know your employees can reach you in a crisis.

To find the best ones, we asked 10 entrepreneurs from YEC to share the tools they use to maintain work-life balance.

1. Asana

Our company uses Asana as an in-house project management tool. I take things one step further and use it as both my professional and personal to-do list. At the end of the day on Fridays, I make sure any work-related items are moved to my calendar for the next week and only my personal items are shown in Asana. If work tasks are out of sight (until Monday), they're also out of mind. - Anshey Bhatia, Verbal+Visual

2. Airplane Mode

As much as I know the importance of keeping a life outside of work, it’s almost impossible to ignore an email or text, no matter what hour of the day it is. Even worse, if it wakes me up at night, I’ll stay awake trying to resolve the issue. So I set my smartphone on airplane mode for a couple of hours in the evening (and before I go to sleep) for a much-needed digital detox. - Elle Kaplan, LexION Capital

3. Calm

The Calm app has a series of guided meditations, relaxing sounds and beautiful scenes to help you relax. It has a useful notification feature that you can set to remind yourself to take a moment to relax. It even has specific meditations targeting stress, anxiety, sleeplessness, etc. - Adelyn Zhou, TOPBOTS

4. The Wheel of Life

The Wheel of Life is a tool that helps me look at all aspects of life and plug these into the wheel to see where there's a lack of balance. This helps me visualize the kind of balance I want to achieve. Now that I have a baby on the way, I know my wheel is going to change again, so it's good to recalibrate yourself during any big changes that may impact that balance. - Murray Newlands, Due

5. Google Calendar

My executive assistant and I use Google Calendar not only for my daily work schedule but also to schedule my personal life. This ensures that I don’t overlook my personal engagements and helps make them as concrete as the business meetings. It's easy to get busy and work through much-needed valuable time with family and friends. - Justin Lefkovitch, Mirrored Media

6. Rapid Planning Method

I use the time management tool Rapid Planning Method (RPM) to manage my work-life balance. RPM is a process that helps you capture the things (tasks, events) that matter most to you. For me, my wife and three kids are the most important. Work is second. Each week I use RPM to help me identify personal and professional tasks that I want to accomplish. This results in a nice balance between work and life. - Kristopher Jones,

7. Slack

It may seem counterintuitive since it connects you constantly, but knowing that I am just a Slack away from my team makes it easy to disconnect. I trust my team to respect my time out of the office (as I respect theirs), so I know someone will only contact me if it's truly urgent. I can relax knowing that the ship is running smoothly and that if I'm needed, I'll know. - Zach Robbins, Margo

8. Calendar Reminders

A common mistake is to try to work as many hours as possible in a given day when starting a company. Doing so will just lead to burnout and a lower quality of output in the long run. I have a daily reminder set in my calendar to either meditate or take a walk. Do I always do it? No. But more often than not, I will — and by doing so, it helps create a work-life separation. - Kevin Telford, SurfWatch Labs

9. An Alarm Clock

I typically use alerts or alarms on my phone throughout the day to hold me accountable to accomplishing certain tasks within a certain time frame. Most importantly, though, I try to set an alarm to close out my day each afternoon or evening, so I know when it's time to walk away from work and focus on my friends, my family and myself. - Firas Kittaneh, Amerisleep

10. My iPhone

I couldn’t sleep without the convenient connectivity that my iPhone provides. I can check emails at my son’s Little League practices and attend meetings wherever I am without interrupting everyone's workflow. It eliminates the need for laptops, wireless internet devices and accessories. And with the ever-changing landscape of the app store, I'm only a search away from answers to my task-related needs. - Daniel Wesley,


Photo credit: bleakstar/Shutterstock

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Scott Gerber
Scott Gerber Member
Scott Gerber is the founder of Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses. Gerber is also a serial entrepreneur, regular TV commentator and author of the book Never Get a “Real” Job.