Today, many people talk about the difficulties of maintaining a healthy work-life balance. In a world where COVID-19 introduced for many the freedom of working from home or adopting a hybrid working model, it seems that we have more flexibility than ever in our working world.
However, the rise of technology and greater expectations of staff to do more in less time have meant that work seems to be taking up a more significant part of many people’s lives than ever before. Therefore, for a healthy work-life balance, you will require a proper routine for it.
Let’s see first ‘what is a healthy work-life balance and what is the use of it’.
Start With The Definition
To begin, let us get a clear definition of what the work-life balance actually means, rather than it simply being yet another office buzzword. The Cambridge dictionary healthy work-life balance definition.
There it is referred to as the amount of time which you are spending by doing your job and comparing it with the amount of time you spend with your family and other things which you enjoy.” It is a clear and succinct definition drawing a distinction between your working world and your free time.
What Are The Importance Of Healthy Work-Life Balances?
If you feel that this is the case in your healthy work-life balance situation, take the time to reassess your working circumstances and think about your activities undertaken in your free time. Finding a healthy work-life balance is an ongoing challenge that may involve making several changes to achieve it.
Remember that no two days are the same for most people, and life has a habit of throwing unexpected situations and challenges your way at the worst possible times. By following the advice and guidance below, you will gain some of the skills and knowledge needed to put your life back into a state of equilibrium.
1. Make Your Working Life Meaningful
If a third of your hours during weekdays are spent at work (for a standard eight-hour working day), you are giving a significant amount of time to your career over the course of your working life. It makes perfect sense, therefore, to enjoy the working world as much as you can. In today’s world of work, the old adage that “a job is for life” does not necessarily apply. It is estimated that most people will have around 12 jobs in their lifetimes, and a large number of people tend to change jobs around five years into their employment.
Picking a career that is meaningful and provides satisfaction is a key way to ensure that your working life feels productive and you look forward to your working hours. The key step is identifying what you want out of your career.
For instance, if you enjoy helping others directly, a career in healthcare is an excellent option. Even if you have already started your working life in a different field or industry, there are ways to move into healthcare through a healthy work-life balance.
If you have a degree, you can undertake online accelerated nursing programs, which will give you the skills required to begin a career in nursing. This is just one option for a career change to make your working world more satisfying based on what values and career aspirations you have. It follows that if you are engaged with the work you do, your job will be more pleasurable and will seem less like work and more of a vocation.
2. Delegate When You Need To
For some people, it is extremely hard to say “no” when tasks are requested, even if our workload is already verging on overwhelming. In fact, the ability to recognize when your workload stops you from taking on more duties is an important one.
Your manager may not know all the tasks you need to complete, and explaining these will offer more insight into your working world. Do not consider it a failure when your workload prevents you from taking on more tasks.
If you can delegate to a co-worker, it means that you can return the favor to them when their workload is immense and yours is under control. Honest communication can be a key factor in the effective delegation, and a well-functioning team will recognize that in times of high workload, other members will offer to step in to give extra capacity.
It can be very motivating to be in a team where delegation and the sharing of workloads is encouraged, as it also gives the sense that co-workers really are working together as one. No one wants to be the person who must continually work late to achieve all their objectives because your healthy work-life balance will be completely skewed if this happens. Be productive but be prepared to ask for assistance and give assistance when it is possible.
3. Seek Pleasure And Relaxation In Your Free Time
Creating a healthy work-life balance also requires the need to have true enjoyment and enriching activities outside of your working world. If you get home from work and crumple into the couch while a microwave meal cooks itself and then spend the weekend sitting in front of the television, your “off-time” is not going to be remotely enriching or satisfying.
One of the main reasons to work is to generate enough income to allow us to seek pleasure in the world and enjoy our finite time on this earth. Here are just three of the activities and pursuits you could consider during your free time to ensure that time off is enjoyable and beneficial to your mind and body.
»Meet Up With Friends And Relatives:
Spend some quality time connecting with your loved ones during your time away from work. It is great to stay connected with the major events and landmarks of those close to you, and your free time is a perfect opportunity for this.
It is also an opportunity to talk about the good and the bad parts of recent weeks and offload stressful situations. A problem shared really is a problem halved!
»Get Out Into The Countryside:
If you are stuck indoors during your working day, free time is a fantastic opportunity to explore the natural world and enjoy the beauty of nature. As well as giving you a breath of fresh air, walking in the countryside helps to clear your mind and put everyday problems into perspective.
If you want to know the secret of how to maintain a healthy work-life balance? Hence countryside visits are another great option which freshens up your mind and soul.
»Indulge In A Hobby:
Your time off work is a perfect opportunity to learn a new hobby. Perhaps you loved art at school but never took it further. Why not learn to paint or draw for pleasure? Contrary to widely held belief, all that is required to get to a proficient level in painting or drawing is the desire to learn and put time into honing your abilities.
The satisfaction of producing your own art that you will want to display in your home will be immeasurable once you have reached a suitable level of ability. If art is not your thing, there are literally hundreds of hobbies to choose from. From genealogy to metal detecting. If you are looking for your next hobby, here are one hundred to choose from.
4. Build Exercise Into Your Week
There are few things more beneficial for both mind and body than taking regular exercise. As well as having numerous health benefits, such as keeping your weight under control and relieving stress, you will find that you sleep better after a good workout.
We often feel more overwhelmed and stressed after poor-quality sleep or not having enough of it. Exercise is proven to promote healthier sleep patterns and therefore allows you to be better rested and in better shape to handle the demands of the working day.
Concentration can also be boosted with regular exercise, allowing you to focus more effectively on complex tasks and activities. It really is vital to build a good plan for regular exercise into your week and stick to it where possible. Your body and mind will thank you for it!
5. Set Your Priorities In And Out Of Work
Modern life tends to give us an immense number of tasks to complete on any given day, and determining the relative priorities and importance of each task is a key way to ensuring that you keep everything running effectively.
While it is a healthy work-life balance skill most of us regularly use in our working lives, it is often overlooked when we are at home. It is important, therefore, to take time to work out what really must be done first at home and what tasks can be completed later.
Our home life tends not to have obvious time pressures on the tasks that need to be done, so it can become easy to spend a lot of time focusing on one task at the expense of others. Work out what is important to the effective running of your home life and complete your key tasks first. You may find that you can free up a lot of time this way and be able to focus on more pleasurable activities once the “must do” tasks are completed.
Having a planning board in your kitchen or home office is a great way to visualize what needs to be done in your home and allows you to see a busy schedule as a number of small tasks rather than an overwhelming block of activities.
6. Reward Yourself When Reaching Milestones
Whether you wish for a healthy work-life balance, progress up the corporate ladder and celebrate success when you get your first promotion, or take the family out for a treat after renovating several rooms in your house, giving yourself rewards for achieving milestones is a great motivator.
It can be easy to focus hard on an important task, do it with real skill to a high level of quality, and then simply move on to the next major task. Where is the joy and celebration in that? Life is full of moments where we achieve goals, whether they be at work or at home.
It is profoundly important to take time to celebrate these major ones and reward yourself for the achievement. It is good for the mind and allows you to take stock of what you have managed to accomplish. The next time you take satisfaction from achieving a major goal at work or at home, why not take your loved ones out for a meal to celebrate.
7. Improve Your Email Habits
In many forms of work, emails can flood into our inboxes throughout the day and can become a huge task in themselves. It can be easy to lose focus and become stressed when you see your inbox count rising.
For a healthy work-life balance is required, the key skill is learning. Not to react every second an email lands and to get out of the habit of dropping everything when you hear the notification sound. Ideally, you should aim to spend a small amount of your morning checking emails, deleting or moving them to other folders when they do not require action or response, and prioritizing the most important messages into your task list for your working day.
Check your emails at regular intervals throughout the day but ensure that you have sufficient time to focus on your key tasks without interruption. When your working day ends, ensure that you leave your emails at the office. If you are checking them remotely via phone or tablet once you are at home, this is eating into your home life and will completely disrupt your work and home life balance.
8. Avoid Fast Food
Every meal should be an opportunity for genuine nourishment, and a balanced diet of fresh food is best to ensure that you are getting enough vitamins and minerals to keep up a healthy work-life balance.
It is easy to grab a processed burger from your local fast-food outlet at lunch or opt for the convenience of a ready meal when you get home from work, but having a poor diet will stop you from functioning at your peak levels and, over time, may affect your overall health. Switch the burger for a salad or take the leftovers from last night’s home-cooked meal to work with you.
Aim to cook from fresh wherever possible, as cooking itself can be a pleasure, and you will ensure you are getting the portion size and nutritional content that is best for you. Having a healthy diet improves both mind and body and will help you deal with the challenges that your work and home life throws at you.
For a healthy work-life balance, all of these points are effective and applicable. The best solutions are to keep your mind fresh and keep some time for yourself at the end of the day. And you will get your best-desired spot. Work-life balances are increasing your work efficiency and productivity. Follow these tips and let us know your opinion through the comment section.