Maintaining a healthy work-life balance allows employees to balance between work and personal responsibilities. Creating a healthy balance will increase your productivity. A study by Lowe (2005) found that one out of four employees experiences high levels of conflict between work and family. When looking at all the job factors that may influence work-life conflict, time spent at work was the strongest predictor. While working remote can be convenient because you don’t have a commute in the morning, or because you can work from the confines of your own home, there are some challenges. Many may find that it is harder to separate your work life from your home life. After all, you are working in your living space. There are many distracting factors when working from home. For example: Kids, spouses, a dirty sink, laundry to be done, and pets to take care of, just to name a few. So now, with all the stressors of life and all the stressors of work taking place at home, how do you maintain a healthy work-life balance?
There are many tips to achieving a healthy work-life balance when working remotely. Some of the most helpful tips I’ve found are listed below. Tip 1: Make a to-do list to start your day productively. When working remotely, it is helpful to create a to-do list to help you stay productive during your day. Crossing things off your to-do list can be satisfying, especially for those who feel like they aren’t getting enough done in the day. Another helpful idea; Tip 2: Set a structured work schedule. This will allow you to stay focused throughout the day even though you are working from home and could be in a more comfortable/relaxing workspace. Speaking of workspace, this brings me to Tip 3: Designate a workspace. Having a dedicated workspace within your home will help you maintain a routine for work hours. This will help replicate when it is “time to clock in” and focus on work. Tip 4: Take breaks. It is important to get up and take time to stretch, move around, and rest your eyes many times throughout the day. This will help alleviate you from getting too overwhelmed with your workday and will allow you to remain productive. Another helpful tip to maintaining a healthy work-life balance is: Designate time for a lunch break. When working from home, I sometimes find it easier to work through my lunch break, bringing my lunch into my office. This means I don’t taking the time I normally do to disconnect from my work and have an hour break or time for self-care. It is important to still designate this hour to disconnect and make your lunch break suitable for you. This could include talking on the phone with a close friend while you eat, a quick yoga exercise, or a light stretch to relax your mind and rejuvenate yourself for the rest of your day. The last tip I find helpful is: Mark the end of your day. Being able to have your work at your fingertips can be very convenient. Although, it can make it hard to walk away. It is important to put an end time to your workday. When the end of your day is getting near, it is important not to rush or cram to get tasks done that can be finished the next day. Instead of working past your end time, it is better to wrap up the project and finish it the next day.
As people navigate maintaining a healthy work-life balance, the tips discussed above won’t always for everyone. Sometimes it’s hard to separate work and life when your work is in the comfortability of your home. Finding a system that works best for you will ultimately help maintain a healthy work-life balance.