Achieving a positive work-life balance is something that many of us struggle with – and for all the good it has done, technology is largely to blame for this.
With many employers now moving towards a hybrid working culture and our mobile devices always by our side, as a society, we’ve created an ‘always-on’ culture. Throw in the fact that our homes have been our workplace for the last year, it’s not surprising that we’re struggling to fully switch off.
Work-life balance importance
According to new research from Aviva, we regularly check our emails outside of working hours and more than a quarter of us are neglecting our physical and mental health due to being busy at work.
Aside from the fact that we all need time off to recuperate and recharge, striking a healthy work-life balance is important for so many reasons.
- Protects your mental health
The past year has caused a sharp increase in the anxiety felt by many. Sleep struggles coupled with trying to juggle work life and home schooling, means lots of us have found it hard to completely switch off. A combination of all these things can lead to poor mental health which in turn could lead to a breakdown or burnout.
- We all need ‘me-time’
Whether it’s reading a book, spending time with family, exercising or doing the gardening, we all need to ensure to take time out to do the things we enjoy.
- It increases productivity
You may think you’re being a great employee by working all hours of the day but if you’re tired and stressed, chances are that your productivity will dip, leading to increased inefficiencies.
How to achieve a good balance between work and life
Now we know that achieving a work-life balance is crucial, how do we do this? Follow our top tips to help incorporate a better work-life balance into even the busiest of schedules.
Take time off
Having spent the best part of a year in lockdown, many of us have felt taking time off is pointless. After all, there’s been nowhere to go and if we’re just sitting around at home, we may as well work anyway, right?
Even if, due to various restrictions, you can’t go anywhere, it’s still incredibly important to take holidays. A couple of days rest and a break from work will give you a chance to switch off and relax. Not only will your productivity and focus be positively impacted, but your stress levels are also likely to be significantly lower.
Set strict work hours
Since working from home, UK employees are working an extra two hours a day, taking shorter lunch breaks and are continuing to put in the required hours even if sick.
As mentioned earlier, working more doesn’t necessarily mean you’re achieving more. As many companies move to a hybrid structure, being strict with your working hours and perhaps getting outside for your lunch break will not only increase your productivity but also allow you to detach properly.
Speak to your employer
If you’re working increased due to a heavy workload, speak to your employer. They may not realise you’re feeling so much pressure or are so busy. Together you can create a plan to help distribute some of your workload to others or maybe look at extending deadlines, so you have more time.
By implementing these work-life balance strategies, you should be able to create a better and more sustainable lifestyle.
If concerns around your income are what drives you to work more than you should, please get in touch with us. We can discuss where you currently are, where you want to be and how we can help get you there in a healthy way.