Do This to Improve Your Work-Life Balance While Working From Home

Work-life balance, a term that was adopted in the 1980s, takes on more importance than ever before. With the increasingly available work from home opportunities, many have taken full advantage. At first glance, it may seem like the optimal work situation as you are able to work in the comfort of your home, perhaps in your pajamas, and avoid your commute to and from work. While each of these may have an initial appeal, there are several factors to consider when working from home. One of them, is having a proper balance between work and your personal life.

The need to establish a healthy work-life balance has began to come to the forefront as the topic of work place burnout has taken precedence. Ultimately, finding an adequate balance between the two may bring many positive outcomes for yourself and your job as a whole. Some of those benefits include reduced stress levels, a boost in productivity, and feelings of motivation. Increased creativity and feelings of a positive grip on life may come as additional incentives. While each of these may be an ideal outcome, they can seem impossible to obtain. Here are some steps to improve your work-life balance while working from home.

Have a Designated Work Area

One of the first things to do while working from home is establish your designated work area. If possible, set up a home office that is free of distraction and separate from your typical home activities. It is understood that a full office isn't obtainable for everyone, but if possible, tape off a specific area for work - even if its a corner of your house. Keep the area as your sole work space. This will provide some boundaries between work and home. Additionally, treat your work area as you would at your job's physical location. This means, take breaks as necessary to give yourself a moment to stretch, eat, use the restroom, and reset - all of the things that you need to maintain productivity, but more importantly, your sanity. After all, you are not a robot, there isn't a need to act as one.

Intentionally Leave Work At Work

Now that your home office is designated, it is essential to leave that area as necessary. For instance, when work is over, allow it to actually end. You no longer have the requirement to leave your job and drive back home so you now have to take on the responsibility on your own. Once your shift is over, pack up your area and enjoy your time off. Give yourself a break to decompress. If you have home tasks to accomplish, they will be okay to remain there for a few minutes longer. Ideally, you would not have likely been home yet anyway. Take some leisurely time. Go for a walk and get some fresh air. Whatever you decide, just make sure to take the time off. Be intentional about it. It's easy to move on to the next task, especially because you are already home. The reality is, there is always something to do so to make sure that you allow yourself a break, write it on your calendar and be sure to do it even if it is just for a few minutes.

Use Your Vacation Time

Be sure to use your paid time off, sick time, vacation time, etc. Whether you actually go somewhere or not, taking time off will do you well. Even if it is just for a day, take the time to rest. Although difficult for some, taking off for a full day or two, will give you the opportunity to recalibrate and simply breathe. It may even allow you to return to work feeling refreshed and ready to dive back in with a clear mind. You have this time available to you for a reason so use it and use it well.

Don't Be Afraid to Speak Up

Lastly, but not least, be sure to present an open line of communication between you and your boss. It doesn't benefit you to harbor stress and not share it with those who may have the resources to assist you. While you may have good intentions to perform your job well, if you are struggling, it will eventually show. It's best to share your concerns with your manager and explain your dilemma. You may be able to present a concern that they haven't thought about, which could benefit the team. They may also have the information for you to receive the proper help that you need.

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