The importance of a healthy work life balance
Some of us work to live. Others live to work. Well, the truth is that neither are ideal and it’s all got to do with balancing out the two to live your best life.
With the mentality of ‘work to live’ firmly set in our perspective, there’s a sense of apathy in your job, that says “I’m only doing this for the paycheck” and, even more dangerously; this mentality could leave you in a dead-end job that never results in much.
The ‘live to work’ mantra is by 21st century standards, a deadly recipe for depression, anxiety and overall sadness. Why? Well, that’s quite simple, when you’re busy working too hard and finding ways to climb the professional ladder at an exorbitant rate; you forget to appreciate life’s beauty.
Balancing your time and energy between work and life is the only recipe for long term success and modern expectations in the workplace make this a feasible and achievable task.
What is a balanced lifestyle and why is it so important?
Finding your own balance between life and work is unique; it all depends on your workload, the responsibilities of your job and the duties you are expected to maintain at home plus the ‘me time’ that you wish to incorporate into your day. There’s no right answer and there’s definitely no judgement on how you tackle either.
But there is a benchmark for what a ‘balanced lifestyle’ should look like. It’s mainly a reflection of the different elements of your life and their proportional presence in your life. Keeping a balanced lifestyle is important to benefit from long-term health improvements and well-being, both physical and emotional.
What are the benefits of having a good work life balance?
Some of the benefits to a balanced work-life routine include:
- a visible increase in your productivity at home and in the office,
- lower absenteeism at work and important personal events,
- a more manageable workload where stress is diminished,
- better health and wellness,
- increased positivity with your colleagues and your family and
- higher levels of commitment and motivation to keep both your employer and your loved ones happy.
How can employers create better work life balance?
Companies in our modern work life are faced with new challenges everyday, but something a leading employer should be looking into on a regular basis is work life balance for their staff.
This is not always an easy task as not all employees have the same needs in their life. Finding the right recipe for your team will require flexibility, discussion with employees and frequent updates and changes to keep everyone interested. Here are a few way to encourage a more lenient working environment:
- Providing flexible hours to your employees will make them feel more at ease and willing to come in to work – it will also make them more grateful for their flexibility.
- Work from home options should be made available to all staff whose jobs are not bound to their office.
- Lunches should be flexible and used as a moment to recharge. Providing lunch in-house is a great way to lighten any employee’s financial load and to free up some of their personal time.
- Laptops over desktops setups are a great option. Working from a stationary computer means your range of flexibility is limited, this can make employees feel trapped. Mobility and remote work is far more encouraging, keeping that work-life balance in order!
- Offer perks that give your employees an added reason to get to work, their eagerness will give them more fire through the day. Remember, perks don’t always need to be monetary; promote wellness with spa treatment vouchers, offer a Friday off as a perk or a personalised gift to give your staff their best life.
Employers are constantly challenged with concepts that improve staff motivation, appreciation and overall happiness at work. Employees take their work problems home so their love for their work will evoke better work life balance in turn.
What are the 5 components of a balanced lifestyle?
But finding that balance in your life is not all to do with how your boss overloads you or how demanding your family and friends are with their social upkeep. It also depends on you as an individual and if you are experiencing overwhelming feelings at home or at work; why not try and introduce these 5 components to your daily habits.
- Keep a healthy diet, avoid the foods that make you tired or moody, even if you’re in a rush to get back to a meeting or dying to grab a fast-food order for the family. Keep it clean, you’ll feel better.
- Get some exercise into your day, if your lunch break is usually spent at your desk, use the time to take a walk around your office; the same goes for time with friends and family, meet up in nature and explore your surroundings.
- Set a sleeping schedule; there’s no way you’re going to live up to your work-life balance goals if you’re getting to bed at 02:00; neither if you’re waking up to a screaming toddler; preempt these disruptions in your sleep pattern with a regular routine.
- Speak about your problems; whether it’s a work issue or a home conflict, get down to the root of the problem and express your emotions; it’s mighty hard, but you’ll feel better once you do.
- Treat yourself at work and at home; make sure that every achievement is monitored and rewarded; leave early on a Friday if you’re ahead of schedule, take your family out for a meal or meet your friends and celebrate.
Positive affirmation is the best way to generate good habits and in return your life will move into perfect balance as you progress. Finding that balance to fit your routine and expectations takes time, but getting the leg work in will greatly benefit you, your work life and your social life.