Work-life balance continues to be a common buzz word in the professional environment. Proper work-life balance helps to prevent chronic stress and burnout in the workplace. Unfortunately for many people, the pandemic has further blurred the already hazy border between work and life, making proper balance even harder to achieve and maintain. That's why we've put together a list of ways to maintain or improve your work-life balance this year.
We are deep enough into the pandemic for you not to be setting unrealistic expectations for yourself. Manage your expectations of what you can reasonably get done in a day in both your personal and professional life. Moreover, remember that it is perfectly ok to give yourself the same consideration you give to others.
If you haven't already done this, you need a dedicated workspace. It will help you separate your personal life from your professional one and allows you to make boundaries similar to those you would have had before the switch to remote work. Creating healthy boundaries is the key to maintaining a work-life balance.
Even if you didn't notice during a typical workday, you take more breaks than you think. Those few moments spent talking to a coworker, getting up to make your afternoon coffee, or even going out for lunch were all moments in which your brain could reset while working. When you're at home, it may be harder to find time for those little breaks, especially with the added pressures to "show your worth." Even so, you need to schedule regular breaks so your brain has time to reset and refresh. Put them on your calendar and stick to them; those breaks will increase your productivity and reduce the likelihood of burnout.
Even though you are spending your days at home, you probably aren't feeling the calm and relaxation that typically comes from being at home all day. Taking a day to refresh and recharge may be what you need to maintain your productivity. And if taking a full day off is not an option, be sure to set aside some time to unplug completely. Turn off your phone after work or on the weekend and disconnect from the world for a little while. A little time to yourself can make all the difference.
If you feel stressed and overwhelmed, you must communicate your emotions with those around you, both personally and professionally. In other words, reach out to your boss and your friends and family if you aren't doing well. Although balance is the key, it's essential to recognize how certain aspects of your life can affect the other and think of the people who can help you better manage the spillover.
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