It’s easy to mistake work-life balance as being a balance between time spent and work and time spent on other non-work activities. Ideally, that would be the easiest way to find balance between work and life, especially if we were immediately able to engage in activities that nourish us personally the moment we step out of work. However, with the change to remote and hybrid work in today’s world, a great deal more effort is required to find true balance between your work and personal life.
The definition of a balance between work and life is a much deeper definition than simply spending a balanced amount of time on your work and your personal life. Even more, there is no simple solution to finding balance in work and life that would work for everyone in the same manner. There are many different steps that you can take to help ensure that you have plenty of your time focused on your personal life and rime alleviated away from your focus on work. This is the importance of making sure that you free your mind from the pressure that you place on your work responsibilities and the stress that you take on yourself for work.
Some of the easiest ways to help balance your work and life include the following:
- Plan ahead for your entire weekly or monthly schedule to insert leisure, social, and fitness activities. These social, mental, and physical activities can help you remove your focus from work and help you free your mind and relieve your stress.
- Embrace the way your brain works and the best ways to make the most of your time. It helps to schedule your work time as closely as possible to set up blocks of time for different tasks, help yourself block away distractions that could pull you away from your work, and work toward your functionality that makes you more productive. It will be easier to close off your work day and work week if you have completed your tasks and projects productively as you scheduled yourself and completed those items.
- End your work days at a certain time. This is helpful no matter whether you work on-site or at home. It helps to make sure that even if you work at home to set yourself up in a specific spot for work and to keep your work separate from your personal life. When you close off your work day, disconnect from your work communication and software and move yourself officially back to your personal life. Make yourself officially moved back to your personal life to keep your work from spilling over into your personal time.
- Another way to help separate your work and personal life can be to have separate devices for your work and personal life. This could include more than your computer but as much as your phone, tablet, smart watch, or any other devices that you may use in both work and personal life. Possibly, if you have a work car that is hooked up to your work phone and work apps and is set up for easy connection to work communication, it may be helpful to only use that car for work and use a separate car for personal and family activities.
Beyond some of these separations between work and life, there are simple activities that you can do throughout your days to help relieve the overwhelming workload and relieve your stress. Some things can be to go out for lunch with coworkers to get away from the office or even leave your home office to get a short mental break from your work and remember to eat something. Other times to actually remember to take time off either for the PTO or vacation days that you earn every year or for the days that you may be sick or suffer bereavement or loss, even if you work from home. It’s important to remember that you still deserve to take care of yourself even if you work from home.
It’s easy to forget your personal life and wellness even if you work from home. This can often come from minimal communication with your manager and other colleagues. It can be helpful to continue your communication with your manager and remain open with your colleagues even if you work from home. It’s important to remember your health and wellness along with your personal and family life as well. If you find that you have trouble with the improvement of your work-life balance it may be helpful to find a personal coach or counselor to help you with the best steps to get started on the improvement to help yourself maintain mental and physical health with your work-life balance.