The main idea
The work-life balance idea was brought to life on the verge of 70s and 80s of XX century in the UK. Overworked corporate employees strove for setting a clear border between professional and personal life. A lot has changed since then. Now, we work using laptops, mobiles, the cloud, at any place really - at the office, at home, at an event or on some Caribbean island. Setting borders is no longer that easy. But at the same time, setting borders is no longer the point.
The modern understanding of work-life balance doesn’t include dividing your life to the professional and personal spaces, it focuses on attaining balance between all the areas of life: work, family, health, hobbies, rest. It’s supposed to be the road to self-fulfillment and greater life satisfaction.
Work-life balance in practice
The contemporary idea of work-life balance stresses the holistic approach. Think about it as a whole: every aspect of your life is its integral part, every aspect is important and every aspect should be given proper attention.
One term is key here: harmony. If you currently have a lot on your plate and need to devote more time to work than you want, make sure to pay more attention to other aspects, like resting, when things quiet down. Always use common sense. Replying to an email after office hours doesn’t make you a workaholic. But consider if you really need to reply to this email. Maybe you can do it tomorrow morning?
Try to delegate tasks at work – you don’t have to do everything yourself. Also, remember that rest isn’t something inferior to working. It’s equally important. Anyway, you’re way more effective when you’re rested and satisfied. Likewise, work isn’t more important than your hobbies, family, and health.
Research has shown that people who have lost control can experience stress, weariness and lack of work satisfaction. Do not make this mistake. Analyze your choices, motivation, and preferences. Think of the ratio that suits you best and try to accomplish it by acting accordingly and maintaining healthy moderation. If you find it difficult to put your work aside and it makes you anxious, try one of the following simple tactics:
- turn off your work mobile, even for a short time,
- don’t check your inbox every 15 minutes,
- take up yoga, tennis, or enjoy a massage.
Designate time to focus on other aspects of your life. However, if the extra time spent working on a project gives you satisfaction, don’t think of it as a bad thing. It’s great that it brings you joy!
You won’t always be able to do exactly as you have planned. But remember – work-life balance consists in a constant pursuit of balance. We hope you keep finding it and we keep our fingers crossed!