How to Improve Work-Life Balance

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In 2023, at least 77% of workers in the US experienced work-related stress, and 57% reported its negative impact on their well-being. Is there a solution to all this stress and negativity? Achieving work-life balance is the answer! But reaching that point is easier said than done, especially if one doesn’t do it right. To help you get started, here are some bold tips for a better work-life balance.

(Check out this list of must-read books on relationships, curated by Project Bold Life.)

Understanding Work-Life Balance

How to improve work-life balance via a seesaw
Want to know how to improve work-life balance? Project Bold Life has some suggestions!

In recent years, balance is a concept that has become an integral part of modern work culture. But with more employees experiencing work-related stress, finding that balance is becoming more prevalent in the workplace. A 2022 study noted that work-life balance is the best solution for the rising issue. In addition, they addressed its bigger impact on an organization’s overall performance.

Despite that, not many people understand what work-life balance should entail. Work-life balance isn’t an approach to maintaining equal hours of work and play but a conscious management of one’s time and energy to meet professional and personal commitments without sacrificing self-care.

Healthy work-life balance means establishing clear boundaries between your professional and personal lives, time management of career responsibilities and individual pursuits, and schedule adaptability. It allows people to engage in various activities of interest, perform well at work, and rest.

By achieving a healthy work-life balance, people could reap numerous benefits for themselves and their workplace. A recent study shows that work-life balance and work-health balance are directly related. The results confirmed that people with balanced professional and personal lives experience fewer health issues and better sleeping cycles. In addition, they have higher productivity and are at less risk of burnout.

“The aim of balance is to live a well-rounded life, to renew and refresh your creative energies on a regular basis so you can achieve your highest potential. We achieve life balance when we have enough time to pursue both work and personal interests that we love.” – Dr. K. Veena Latha, Associate Professor, St. Ann’s College of Education

How to Improve Work-Life Balance

Talking about work-life balance is easy; the difficult part is achieving it. The secret to a healthy work-life balance is the commitment to improving and the determination to make a change for one’s well-being. Here are the best ways to achieve work-life balance at work and home.

1.   Take a Break

Always take advantage of work breaks offered by the workplace. Taking short breaks can improve concentration, reduce stress, and keep you engaged in your tasks. When you take a break, you’re giving your brain time and space to rest. Due to this, you retain all information longer. In addition, it helps you stay focused and prevents physiological fatigue.

When your workplace offers lunch breaks, you should use them to your benefit, especially when working from home. Moving away from your desk for at least half an hour to eat, walk, or meditate can help manage your stress levels.

2.   Set Your Priorities

a businesswoman thinking about a chalk life
Don’t work too much. Don’t work too little. As in all things, balance is essential.

One thing people get wrong with work-life balance is not identifying their priorities or making wrong ones. Your list of daily priorities shouldn’t include your work responsibilities and household chores. Setting these tasks as your priority would lead to less time for doing things you love.

Take the time to think of what is important and what activity you’d like to prioritize each day. It could mean having family bonding activities after dinner, setting time for exercise before work, or dedicating an entire night to self-care.

Whatever it is, stay mindful and set reasonable boundaries. Remember that a good work-life balance is doing what makes you happy while keeping your work performance high.

 

3.   Practice Self-Compassion

Achieving work-life balance means understanding that things won’t always go the way you want or plan. It also means letting go of perfection. Aiming to do things perfectly could unintentionally put more pressure on oneself, which could accumulate stress. In addition, your tasks could become a stressor and badly affect your performance.

Practicing self-compassion lessens the risk of depression, anxiety, and burnout. Recognizing that mistakes and mishaps happen can do wonders for your well-being and helps build encouragement and support.

4.   Communicate Your Boundaries

Setting and communicating your boundaries at work is crucial to achieving a healthy work-life balance. Letting your colleagues, employer, and clients where your work starts and ends each day ensures a distinct divide between your professional and personal lives.

When you set boundaries, always state your work hours and when you start being unavailable for work-related matters. Setting up an autoresponder to alert your work contacts of your unavailability removes the pressure of checking work emails. Having key people to call you for any emergencies will also prevent the anxiety of missing critical information.

5.   It’s Never Bad to Ask for Help

Many people with unhealthy work-life balance have problems with reaching out for help. Most professionals feel guilty about asking for assistance as they don’t want to bother anyone else. Endearing as that belief is, it would only affect your performance and the workplace in the long run.

Instead of thinking that asking or accepting help is bad, think of a helping hand as a gift and a solution. Lending a hand and asking for assistance helps build a supportive workplace culture that could benefit all relationships involved.

 

 

Don’t forget the book that lays out the principles of goal-achievement and attaining a Bold Life!

About the Author

Through timely and thoughtful articles, the book Project Bold Life: The Proven Formula to Take on Challenges and Achieve Happiness and Success, and other media, we deliver engaging content that educates, motivates and inspires you to live a Bold Life.
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