What is work-life balance? It is a condition in which people can manage their time for work and personal life. Personal life here can be defined as time spent with family, friends, your hobbies and even your own self. Is work life balance important? The answer is definitely yes, because if we can have work-life balance we can prevent stress and burnout, perform better at work and increase productivity, good for our mental health, it can bring happiness and fulfillment even fewer health problems. Work-life balance is not an achievement but a cycle in which you have to keep doing it constantly. In modern days people assume that longer working hours means better productivity because the more you work the more things you can get done. It is totally wrong. According to economics professor John Pencavel’s research, productivity per hour declines sharply when a person works more than 50 hours a week. Therefore working longer than 55 hours can make it hard to concentrate and accidents at work become more likely. So don't overwork yourself and start implementing work-life balance in your life.
Work-life balance is not achievement, it is a way of life. We need to encourage it and eliminate the stigma about longer working hours means higher productivity. It is not true at all. If you feel overwhelmed with work do tell your employers so you can have discussion and agree on better work arrangements.
- Enjoy your time off
When it is your time outside of work or during off hours don’t let yourself doing some work even if it is just replying texts or email and answering phone calls. Those small things will soon become a habit then you will end up working during off hours. To avoid these, always complete your essential or important tasks during working hours. Don't worry about missing out or being seen as a bad employee for logging off work before your colleagues.
- Take proper breaks at work
When it is time for lunch break, try not having your lunch and working at the same time. Keep a boundary between lunch break and working hours. Take this time to enjoy your meal and let your mind rest for a while.
- Plan time ahead and block out your time
Try to plan time for yourself, family and friends. For example, on weekdays during off hours it is time to spend with your family, every Saturday it is your time to relax at home and to do your hobbies and every Sunday it is a day to spend time with your friends to unwind and have fun.
- Work smart not long hours mindset
As we have mentioned earlier, long hours doesn’t mean higher productivity. This means you need to allow yourself to do a certain amount of time per task and try not to get caught up in less productive activities at work such as constant interruptions for chatting with colleagues.
- Practice self-compassion
One of the most important ways to have work-life balance is to let go of perfectionism. We can’t always get things right or do things perfectly. Research shows that perfectionistic tendencies predict issues like depression, anxiety and stress. Being a perfectionist would cause unnecessary stress in your life and make you unhappy with your life so learn to be nicer and kinder to yourself.
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