Why is Work-Life Balance Important?
Updated: Jun 20, 2022
Everybody hears the term “work-life balance is important.” But how often do you practice it? You get up at six in the morning to start your day and find yourself in the office from eight until five. After that, maybe you get in a workout or can find time to sit down with friends. Maybe even both. Then you’re getting ready for bed by ten at night just to start the process all over again. You got the work figured out, but life? Not so much.
Where’s that balance they were speaking of?
There are a few things to remember about keeping work and the rest of your life separate so you can achieve a bit of harmony in your—supposed to be but not including overtime and parenting—forty-hour workweek.
This can be tough because we can often find ourselves wanting to impress our higher-ups, whether it’s because we’re just that good at what we do or because we haven’t learned how to say no. Start to establish boundaries by not discussing work if you’re not clocked in, especially with bosses. Do the job you’re paid to do. If you find yourself doing manager duties as an assistant, discuss a possible increase in wages. If that’s off the table, make sure you add those duties to your CV and then consider looking for another job.
Any workspace that can ask you to do things outside of your duties and won’t pay you, doesn’t value you. It’s a job-seekers market out there, find a job that pays and treats you well.
Keep a Calendar
This one is great because a good routine is never a bad thing to incorporate into your life. It can often give us a sense of control in a world that often feels the opposite. Schedule time for yourself, time to be active, time for your friends, time for your family, and of course, time to further your own self-improvement. If you find that you have fewer hours in the day than you initially believed, consolidate. Why not listen to an audiobook or podcast while you work out? Spend the hour before bed winding down and practicing self-care. Have a weekly meal set aside for your friends and family, you do not have to have time for all of these things in one day. Try Trello or Asana.
Use your Vacation Time
You know you have PTO but you find yourself saving it for “someday,” so why can’t that day be a month from now? What about that concert you wanted to see or that cruise you’ve been meaning to take? You’ve earned that PTO fair and square and it’s yours to do whatever with, even if that means one day a month where you’re just able to run errands all day. Try to shy away from that but as they say on the internet, PTO stands for “prepare the others.” Note: don’t let HR or your bosses bully you out of taking that time. It’s yours.
Let’s be real, it can be hard to keep it all together all the time, it’s almost as if we don’t have enough time in the day. Though there may not be enough time to do everything you want to do on a random Tuesday, you will eventually work out a groove for yourself. If you have it in the budget, hire someone to come clean your home once a week or meal prep on Sundays. It’s your life to do with what you please, don’t let your job run it.
- Regard Tang