Trying to have a good work-life balance? These tips will help you
While the concept of work-life balance isn’t new, achieving it has become a challenge these days. Especially in today’s day and age, where work-from-home has blurred the lines between personal and professional life, people are struggling to restore the balance.
The disruptions caused by Covid-19 continue to meddle with our everyday life. There is no denying that work-from-home has saved us from long hours of commute , but it has also forced us to give up our personal space and extend our professional commitments beyond the conventional 9 to 5 time. People are now spending more time in front of their laptops and skipping their breaks in order to finish their work. Consequently, we can see more individuals suffering from mental and physical health issues.
Employers also believe that not spending much time on yourself can affect your productivity and efficiency levels, which in turn can severely impact your performance at work.
But how do we define a good work-life balance? It’s simple — when you can fulfil all your work duties without giving up on your passions or hobbies, and still have the time that you like to spend with your friends and family, then you have an excellent work-life balance.
So, are you dealing with a poor work-life balance? If yes, then here we have a few effective ways to help you improve it.
1) Religiously follow a work schedule – Whether you work from home or from office, stick to specific work hours and do not entertain any calls, texts or meetings beyond those official hours. Otherwise, your managers and colleagues will start having unrealistic expectations about you. Let us say you are working from home and decide to start your work from 11 in the morning instead of 9. It will automatically drag the workday to 7 or 8 in the evening. You will end up sacrificing your personal time for duties that could have been finished earlier.
2) Take proper breaks during work hours – Experts suggest taking scheduled breaks throughout the day, so that you can boost your concentration levels and give your mind and body the time to relax and rejuvenate. If you start your work at 9 am and have your first 15-minute break at 11 am, then you will not be swayed by distractions any time before your break. Whether it’s a call from your friends and family, or a casual meeting with a coworker, you will learn to respond to them only during your breaks and not when you are working. As a result, you will experience an increase in your productivity and efficiency levels.
3) Keep your weekends to socialise and connect – Socialising is necessary for those who are stuck in a work-from-home setup. While working from home, we often become so comfortable within our four walls that we don’t feel the need to step out and meet people even during the weekends. However, practising this over time can leave a negative impact on your relationships, and make it difficult for you to communicate or connect with anyone. Just an outing with your friends can lower your stress levels and make you feel a lot better.
4)Learn to say “no”, when needed – If you are someone who constantly agrees to multiple requests at work, then you should definitely learn to say no sometimes. Taking extra tasks when you already have your own duties lined up, or frequently going the extra mile for your manager by giving up your me-time, is a way to put your mental health at risk. In addition, not saying no when you desperately want to can become a cause of frustration and might hamper your personal as well as professional relationships. Therefore, respond to such unwanted requests by saying, “sorry, I can’t do this any time soon”, “I have a lot on my plate today so can I help you another time?”, or “this is beyond my skill set so can I help you with anything else?”.
5) Follow your passions or sign up for hobbies – If you are following your passions while working as a full-time employee, then your work-life balance is no doubt remarkable. Especially if you work from home, then consider it as a golden opportunity to follow your passions. Painting, pottery, working out, reading, or basically doing anything that keeps your spirits high and refreshes your mind can help you manage your work life better. For instance, you might be a writer by profession, but painting or doodling may help you release stress and attract positivity.
6) Feel free to seek mental health support – If at any point you feel that your stress levels are too high, you should immediately talk to a mental health expert. Sometimes we find it hard to express our true emotions and fears to our friends and family, and this further makes us suffer until we finally break down. Don’t let your stress escalate to this extent. Instead, approach a certified counsellor. They will not only address your issues but will also suggest appropriate ways to deal with them. Remember, there is no harm in admitting that you can no longer deal with your problems on your own. This sense of acceptance will only help you grow.