Balancing Work, Life, and Volunteering

Being busy is worn as a badge of accomplishment by many. Our culture often equates busyness to success and importance. This may have some truth to it to a degree, but are you being as effective as you can be, or is busyness getting in the way? On a scale of importance between work, life, and volunteering, volunteering usually falls behind the other two. How can a busy professional make time to be a valuable volunteer? Here are some tips on making the most of your time while volunteering for your association.

Set Priorities

Before getting involved with your association, it’s important to set guidelines on how much time you want to dedicate to work and volunteering while balancing a personal life. How much time are you willing to regularly set aside to fulfill your volunteer duties? After you figure that out, then you can move on to finding a role that fits your schedule.

Find Your Role

Volunteering for the sake of volunteering can turn into a disaster for everyone involved. Each person possesses different skills that make them valuable, so find where yours can best be utilized. There are many microvolunteering opportunities within associations for people with small windows of time, but paired with the right skill set a small amount of time can mean large rewards for your association.

Don’t Become Overcommitted

You’ve set your priorities and found an opportunity that suits your skill set, now it’s smooth sailing, right? Sort of. If you stick to your original plan, everything should work out. However, the temptation is to pick up other small tasks as a volunteer, meaning you must either dedicate more time than you planned or split up your already small window of time, making you less effective. Avoid becoming overcommitted. You will be a greater value to your association when you are honest with yourself about what you can realistically do.