Work is an important element of everyone’s life. Our urge to achieve professionally can make us put our well-being aside. Creating a harmonious work-life balance or work-life integration is vital for our physical, emotional, and mental well-being and also our careers. As we become more connected through technology and social media, it becomes increasingly difficult to separate work from our personal life. It’s usual practice to check emails at all hours of the day and nights, conduct business calls at the dinner table, and work on our laptops on weekends. Employers expect more from their employees, putting them under increased pressure to deliver better results. As a result, employees work longer hours and spend less time at home.
Keeping a healthy work-life balance benefits not just one’s health and relationships, but also one’s productivity and performance.
Symptoms of Work-Life Imbalance
An employee who is having trouble striking healthy work-life integration is frequently worn out, stressed out, and distant. People are more prone to make mistakes at work or fall behind, and their higher level of stress may worsen their mental or physical health. Furthermore, as they struggle to manage an excessive workload, they are more likely to miss out on significant events in their personal lives.
Given how challenging it may be to find and keep new employees in today’s workforce, businesses that have a reputation for promoting work-life balance have grown in popularity. Here are some other reasons why work-life balance is crucial.
One of the most prevalent health problems at work is stress. Chronic stress can also affect one’s mental well-being because it has been linked to an increased risk of depression, anxiety, and insomnia. Burnout at work is caused by prolonged periods of excessive stress. When employees’ work-life balance is steady, they will be considerably happy at work. As a result, overall productivity also increases.
Speaking of a balance between work and life is one thing. It’s another to get there. Here are some useful recommendations for developing your sense of balance at home and work.
Recognize peaks in productivity
It shouldn’t matter what time of day the work is completed as long as it is completed. While some people work best and are most creative in the morning, others like a slower start and work best in the afternoon. To decrease procrastination and the stress brought on by a lack of productivity, employees should work to their strengths and schedule their tasks around those times when they are most productive.
Set priorities in your life
Juggling work and personal life will unavoidably necessitate some sacrifices. It is not possible to accommodate every family function, school event, or social engagement in addition to the work calendar. However, just as there are sometimes very important appointments attended at the office, some personal responsibilities should also be considered unmissable. When it comes to maintaining a healthy work-life balance, time management is crucial. Most people tend to disregard this fact. Due to this, they are exhausted by the end of the day, with no time to relax. As a result, one must ensure that they have a solid daily schedule in place.
Make mental health and well-being a priority
There is a lot of noise on social media urging people to make the most of their alone time by picking up new hobbies or increasing their physical activity. In a time of increased anxiety and uncertainty, maintaining mental health must be the first priority. Utilize the idea of forming a good habit to improve your productivity and mental health. Think of routines like everyday meditation, regular walks or exercise, social interaction, and a habit of thankfulness & gratitude.
If you work from home or in an office setting, it’s helpful to plan your day so that you have frequent scheduled breaks. By taking breaks, you’re less likely to get side-tracked from work during designated work hours by family, friends, or household chores.
Plan social activities
When work is exceptionally stressful, it’s tempting to cancel social plans. Remember the goa trip that never came to fruition? Regardless of what’s going on at work, it’s important to schedule at least one social event per week.
Being social and fostering relationships with others can be done via volunteering also. Employees can reduce their stress and commit to social issues by being encouraged to volunteer. This also boosts a corporation’s CSR, or corporate social responsibility, initiatives. As a result, the company and its employees will gain goodwill.
Stick to your normal working hours
Make a decision and stick to it, whether it’s 9 a.m.-5 p.m. or 7 a.m.-3 p.m. Once employees develop the habit of letting their workday interfere with their personal or family time in the evenings, it is difficult to re-establish a routine. If you make it a habit to respond to emails at 10 p.m., your boss and co-workers will continue to expect you to do so. Instead, make it clear to your co-workers that you stop work at the same time every day and will not be available again until the next morning.
Be compassionate with yourself & when in need, seek help from others
Achieving a feeling of work-life balance requires letting go of perfectionism, which is one of the most crucial steps. Perfectionism as a strategy may have contributed to some success in academic settings and at the beginning of a profession. However, over time, the stress it produces builds up. As our obligations grow, so does the stress on our body and our emotional capacity. Life is not always simple, and that must be understood. By accepting this reality, you may start moving in the direction of a more sympathetic growth-and-learning philosophy in both business and life. Stop being Amir Khan of your workplace, however, you can learn a lot from Rancho when it comes to achieving work life balance.
Never keep your suffering a secret or let job pressures get out of control. These secret sufferers end up becoming supervillains (of course in movies) but in real life secret suffering can take a toll on your mental health. When things get too much, co-workers, supervisors, friends, and family are there to lend a hand and share the load. But if they are unaware of what is happening, they cannot assist.
Open, honest discussions about your demands as well as those of your company and team can lead to fruitful solutions. To satisfy their employees’ interests, successful organizations provide a variety of flexible work options. A reduced workweek, flexi-time, the ability to work from home, or job-sharing are examples of such benefits.
Find a career you enjoy
Changing your work or the way you do it may be necessary if you feel that it’s disconnected from what interests, excites, and energizes you. While work does not have to (and cannot) meet all of your demands for purpose, meaning, social connection, and challenge, it can bring moments of satisfaction, success, and connection. While it is not always possible to find your kick, you can definitely find ways to make your work interesting.
Keep in mind that many different factors affect work-life balance. Make sure you follow some or all of the above recommendations to maintain your ideal work-life balance even during difficult circumstances. Keep in mind that when you take on new responsibilities and leave behind old ones, your work-life balance will keep changing. Make sure you prioritize what is important to you by checking in with yourself frequently.