work life balance

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the world, we were forced to move online and work from home. Thus, pushing us to adapt to these changes and achieve a work-life balance while working from home. But even before the global pandemic affected our careers, we use to glorify the hustle culture. More often than not, we push ourselves to succeed professionally and forget to take care of our mental health. While it is essential to build a successful career, it is also important to find the right balance between work and personal life and ensure emotional well-being. 

Not having a work-life balance can lead to burnout and leads to unproductivity in your workplace. It can cause mental exhaustion and leave you feeling unhappy as well. In this blog, we will discuss what it means to have a work-life balance and provide tips on achieving this balance. 

What is work-life balance?

Simply put, a work-life balance refers to the amount of time that an individual spends on their work versus the amount of time spent on other activities such as their hobbies, relaxing, or anything else. 

It is essential to balance the two to increase your overall well-being and happiness and ensure a healthy work environment. Depending on your age, your other commitments, and your career goals, there is a slight variation between the exact balance that you can achieve. But, no matter what these factors are, it is crucial to maintain a balance. Now that we know what a work-life balance is let us understand why it is important to manage your time effectively. 

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Why do I need to maintain a work-life balance?

There are several ways in which the lack of a work-life balance can affect you. Be it physically, emotionally, or financially, it will surely take a toll on you and your immediate surroundings. Not only can an imbalance affect your relationships, but it can also negatively impact your work performance. 

Let’s look at a few reasons why you should focus on a work-life balance. 

1. Avoid burnout: 

Apart from creating problems in your personal life, there is a greater chance that you are also negatively affecting your career. After all, individuals do not work at their best potential when they are exhausted or short-tempered. While burnout isn’t a new concept, the number of individuals affected by this has massively increased in 2020 due to the ongoing global pandemic. Employee burnout has seen a jump in numbers over the past year. 

2. Reduce stress: 

Stress and burnout do go hand-in-hand. Excessive stress can lead to burnout and often causes other side effects that lead to personal distress and health issues. Persistent stress causes an individual to be highly unsatisfied at work. According to a report by the American Psychological Association, the reported stress levels by Gen Z individuals has increased from 5.8 in 2019 to the high of 6.1 recorded in 2020.

3. Fulfil your personal and professional goals: 

We are taught that constantly working hard will lead to success. However, this is not always the case. Taking care of your mental health and taking some time off work to relax can boost your morale and motivate you to perform better at your job. Not having a work-life balance can reduce the quality of your work and stop you from achieving your personal and professional goals. 

How to achieve a better work-life balance

One way to achieve a better work-life balance is thinking about your current demands and responsibilities in your personal and professional life. After you have evaluated your responsibilities, you can establish a set of rules that will help you maintain a balance. You can achieve this by following these steps. 

1. Create a realistic boundary between work and non-work tasks

It is important to create a boundary between work and after-work hours and stick to this schedule unless it is unavoidable. You can choose if you want to stick to working for eight hours and not checking your emails after work hours or not checking your work emails on your day off. It is important to keep your personal and professional life separate. 

2. Prioritise the events based on importance

Organising your goals and tasks is crucial to maintain a work-life balance. You must set an achievable goal and focus on prioritising your life’s most critical events- whether it is at home or work. 

Also Read: 5 Signs it’s time for a career change 

3. Set some time aside for you

As important as it is to work, it is equally important to give yourself a break. Taking time off from your busy schedule to relax is important for your mental well-being. Whether you enjoy painting, getting deeply involved in the fictional world of books, listening to music, or catching up on your favourite Netflix series, taking this time off for yourself will do wonders. 

4. Learn how to say ‘no.’

If you’re an individual who is a people-pleaser or are new to your job and are afraid of what someone else may think if you say ‘no’, it becomes very easy to overwork yourself. Learning how to say no will land you in situations that could have been avoided. You don’t have to do everything. Sometimes, it’s more important to assess your workload and see if it’s possible to take on additional responsibilities or not. 

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5. Make use of technology 

Instead of driving to work, you can opt for an online video conferencing method such as Zoom, Teams, or Skype. Doing so will help you save travel time, and instead of spending this saved time to relax or make yourself a cup of coffee (or anything that you enjoy!). 

Will my employer encourage this? 

You are not the only one who can benefit from a work-life balance. Building a working environment that encourages their employees to look after themselves and their mental health will, in turn, lead to an increase in productivity and bring an overall positive atmosphere in the workplace. 

Happy employees will lead to increased productivity in the workplace. If employees quit their job due to being overworked or unhappy with their job, there will be high costs incurred. Thus, offering a range of flexible options such as work from home is a great way to encourage a work-life balance. 

Closing thoughts 

These are some tips that you can keep in mind to ensure that you achieve a work-life balance. Often, we are stuck in a career that may not be best-suited for us. We must remember that we can get out of that situation and learn new skills that will open-up better opportunities that provide more of a work-life balance. Great Learning provides various courses in technical as well as business domains that will help you upskill and ensure that you are working in the right environment. If you have any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments below. 

Also Read: Are you at a career crossroad? 

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