Balancing your work life and your personal life can be extremely challenging for some. With working from home becoming more of the new normal, the line between the two has become even more blurry. This is what we want to avoid. Because of this, we’re going to suggest a few ways to help create a better work-life balance.
Since a lot of us spend a lot of time at work, it can often creep its way into our regular lives. This is where setting boundaries come in. While this may be obvious, most of you reading this article probably don’t have any work boundaries. Sorry to call you out, but that’s how we get better. When setting boundaries consider these things:
- How many hours will I work?
- What conditions would I willingly work overtime for?
- When will I have my lunch break?
- What work can I realistically commit to for the week?
Now we have that sorted, the tricky bit comes with executing these boundaries. Luckily we have a little formula to help with this: self-disciple + self-value = a strong combination for executing boundaries. When you have self-discipline and value yourself enough to want the best for yourself - executing boundaries you set becomes easy. Why? Because these boundaries are made by you, for you.
You have 23-28 days for annual leave, why don’t you take them? Some of us have separation issues when it comes to working and it’s not okay. How many of you have let your untaken annual leave pile up to the point your own company practically forces you to take it? You need to take time off so you can completely detach from work and come back reenergized.
One way to get better at this is by planning and submitting your holiday requests at the start of the year, planned for the rest of the year. That way you have all of your annual leave days fixed in place. When you request annual leave as you go, it’s a lot easier for you to put it off or not put in those requests.
Unplug From Technology
When you close your laptop at the end of a workday, spend an hour or so completely technology-free. When you switch off from technology after work this gives you a better focus on other aspects of life - friends, and family. Instead of decompressing from work on your phone, you could spend it having a conversation with your family or friends. Unplugging after work allows you to recharge and reenergize yourself. Go for a run, a walk, or have some tea while reading a book. Soak in the nature surrounding you, do something that doesn’t require you to look at a screen.
Exercise Is a Must
You’ve heard this before but we’re here to hammer this home: exercise is a must. Exercise, of any kind, puts you in a better physical and mental condition. Why is this essential for creating a good work-life balance you wonder? Well, when working by your laptop, you’re most likely in a fixed position you rarely change - this isn’t good for your back or posture (we talk more about this in our Ways to Fix Bad Posture Blog). Exercise can help minimise the damage of this according to the NHS. Work can also chip away at your mental health at times, exercising during your lunch break can help rid you of any work stress or anxiety.
Separate Your Work Life and Personal Life
You have to keep your work-life very separate from your personal life. And by separate we mean, as detached as possible. Don’t be the person that checks their work email at bottomless brunch or the person that takes work calls while on a date. Just don’t do it. Creating a work and personal life divide will help you improve your efficiency at work. It will also help take away from the stress in your personal life. Less burnout, more relaxation - this is what we want!
You can do this by implementing these simple things:
- Using your work laptop only for work
- Leaving your work phone at home
- Making sure you only attend social outings when your work is complete
- Avoid giving clients or teammates your personal email or phone number
Work-Life Balance with OSU
At the end of the day, you want to make sure you live your best life. This involves making sure that your work-life doesn’t interfere with this. If you don’t take control now, you could find yourself slipping into bad working habits - this is what we need to avoid. Hopefully, after reading this article you’re in a better position to make actionable changes to get that work-life balance more balanced.