Prioritizing Family: Stephen Odzer of New York Looks at Ways to Maintain Balance and Prioritize Family Even with a Busy Work Schedule

Stephen Odzer

March 11, 2021

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“Work-life balance” is a buzzphrase we hear often in the corporate world. But achieving a true balance between your work and family lives is about much more than flexible hours and unlimited PTO. Finding that balance is important to your success and quality of life overall, says Stephen Odzer of New York. 


Advancements in technology have brought many improvements to our lives, including the ability to stay connected from just about anywhere. While this is a boon to our personal lives, it can become a burden when your work commitments start to encroach on your personal life. As the CEO of a major distribution company and a family man, Stephen Odzer of New York has first-hand advice on how to prioritize your family and maintain a work-life balance – even in the face of a busy work schedule.


Establish Boundaries and Unplug Advises Stephen Odzer of New York

Modern technology is both a blessing and a curse. While it allows us to remain informed and connected with family across great distances, it also keeps us connected to work through our laptops and phones. Home used to be a completely separate place from work, but now we’re accessible 24-hours a day says Stephen Odzer.


Checking your email at all hours distracts you from family time and chips away at the rest time your brain desperately needs to avoid burnout. The pandemic has further blurred that line with people working from home and around their kids’ schedules. It’s easy to get sucked into a never-ending stream of emails, phone calls, and workflows when you’re working and living in the same space.


That’s why it’s important to set strong boundaries about your availability and hours, says Stephen Odzer. If you work in an office, set an away message to automatically respond once you leave the office. Something simple like, “My hours are between 8 am and 5 pm. I’ll get back to you as soon as possible tomorrow morning,” works just fine.


If you work from home, you can do the same thing. Set an alarm for the end of the workday and when it goes off, stand up and walk away from your desk. This is a signal to your brain and to your family that work is over and now it’s time to focus on family.


Make One Night “Family Night” 

Another way to prioritize family is to set aside a specific evening each week suggests Stephen Odzer of New York. Make this night sacred – block it off on your calendar and don’t schedule over it. Movie night, game night, legos, reading together, making dinner – whatever it is that brings you and your family together, this is the time for it.


Most parents can’t join in on after-school fun every night. You still have to spend time with your spouse, deal with household issues, clean up, and attend other social functions, after all. But this is a night that you can all look forward to as a family – a night where everything stops except for enjoying one another’s company.