Thanks to the accessibility and connectivity of modern technology, these days we are more tied to our work than ever, which can be somewhat of a double-edged sword. Whilst it can make us more productive, it can at times also make us feel as though work is encroaching on our free time.
So just how should you be balancing home and work life in a healthy and feasible way? If you’ve been feeling overwhelmed at work, then this advice could be just the thing that you’ve been looking for.
Be available but not all the time
If your work has a tendency to bother you with trivial matters after work hours, then you’re going to have to draw the line somewhere. It could be as simple as requesting all non-urgent messages to be emailed to you rather than called through, and stating that after 7 pm you’re going to be unavailable to answer. Unless it is seriously urgent or vital, then it is a good idea to discourage people from relying on you all the time out of the office – teams should support each other but within reason.
During your holidays, your phone should be off
On your holidays, you shouldn’t be working at all, so don’t even take your work phone with you! Leave an out of office message on both your email and voicemail and then check your email perhaps twice a week during your holidays. Don’t forget to leave a point of contact that can be contacted instead of you whilst you’re away – they should be the only one trying to reach you at all then, and only in vital cases.
Try to stick to your hours
Of course, there will always be hectic weeks that’ll see you working well past usual business hours, however in general do try to stick to your hours that you have set yourself. Overworking is a sure-fire way of increasing your stress levels and it eats into your leisure hours, which are really important for your well-being. Self-employed persons often tend to overwork, because there are often periods when there are little work, and then suddenly works can pick up, and the whole work-life balance can disappear in a blink of an eye. This is often the case with tradesmen, such as boiler engineers that can struggle to find work in the summer, but in winter it can become so hectic, that they end up working 7 days per week, eventually exhausting themselves.
Don’t let work take over your life – it’s all about striking the right balance.