6 ways to improve your work-life balance

The importance of a strong work-life balance cannot be underestimated. In today’s candidate-driven market, you now hold more authority than ever before, and you should use this to your advantage to improve your wellbeing.

The effects of having a poor work-life balance can be incredibly damaging to your mental health; increasing your risk of stress and burnout. So, if you’re taking your work home with you over the weekend, working long hours and letting it affect your personal life, you need to start prioritising your work-life balance, fast.

This will not only improve your mental and physical wellbeing, it can also help to raise your productivity. If you aren’t taking your work home with you and aren’t worrying about it, you’ll return to work the following morning well rested and ready to tackle the day ahead. Working while exhausted and stressed just isn’t sustainable.

With this in mind, here are a few ways you can improve your work-life balance!

Leave work at the office

While this may seem obvious, it’s just not the reality for a lot of workers. While it may be tempting to finish off a task in the evening, work should always stay in the workplace and not come home with you.

After all, worrying about completing a task or project while at home can wreck your personal life, to the point where work engulfs your entire being. If you’re working unpaid overtime in order to keep up with your workload, you need to make a change.

Whether this is by limiting the time you spend on your phone or avoiding surfing the web at work, a change is necessary. Alongside this, get into the practice of saying ‘no’ to your manager when the workload just keeps on piling up.

By leaving your work at the office instead of taking it home with you, you’ll ensure you have the evenings and weekends to yourself, stress-free. In turn, this will boost your productivity, as you’ll come into work in the mornings feeling more refreshed.

Your health should be a priority

Before anything else, your health should be your number one priority. If you notice that you’re feeling constantly stressed or anxious, you need to make a few alterations to your lifestyle.

The likelihood of experiencing burnout multiplies if you have a poor work-life balance. Turning up to work exhausted and full of dread for the day ahead just isn’t sustainable at all. While some workers prefer a fast-paced, high intensity environment, this shouldn’t result in your physical and mental health suffering.

If you do realise that your mental health is deteriorating, talk to your manager about lessening your workload. If things get really bad, you should consider exercising some mental health sick days or taking annual leave to give yourself a break.

Use your holidays effectively

If you’re struggling with work or need a break, be sure to use your annual leave effectively. Did you know that a third of working professionals don’t use up all of their holiday allowance, meaning for the few days they don’t use, they’re basically working for free.

Your annual leave is there for a reason; so make the most of it. If you want your holiday days to last longer, why not use them during bank holiday weekends, to stretch them out a little further.

If you have no holidays lined up, but still have some days to spare, why not take a few Fridays off? This can really help to break up your week and give you a nice three-day weekend to look forward to!

Don’t forget about your friends and family

It’s important to never forget about those who care about you. Because when the dust settles, and you’ve been too busy neglecting your loved ones for your job, you’ll feel isolated and lonely.

Instead of putting your work ahead of meeting with friends or time with your family/a loved one, try and strike a balance. Your job is where your work should stay; don’t let it invade into your private life.

Try and organise your schedule early and put dates in the diary for allotted time to spend with friends and family. This way you can avoid double-booking yourself, while also striking a healthy balance between your personal and professional lives.

If all else fails, find a job you love

If, try as you might, you’re still struggling to find a positive work-life balance, maybe it isn’t you. Maybe it’s actually your job.

If you come to this realisation, it may be beneficial for your wellbeing to discuss this with your manager. After all, a good employer will be receptive of your needs and will act on them to ensure you feel comfortable and content in your role.

Although, this is not the case for all employers. If after speaking with your manager, you’re yet to see any changes and your work-life balance is still poor, then it’s time to move on. There are plenty of jobs out there with a great work-life balance; and this should be one of your highest priorities when deciding on a job offer.

Why your work-life balance is vital

Having a good work-life balance can keep your productivity and motivation high, while limiting the risk of stress and burnout. If you haven’t got a good balance between your home and work life, your mood will drop and you’ll quickly be engulfed by the pressures of your job.

The ‘always-on’ culture just isn’t sustainable. Improving your work-life balance may seem like a tricky task, but with a few adjustments and attitude changes, is certainly achievable.

Be sure to discuss your concerns with your employer early and often, keep your work at the office and out of your personal life, put your health first and find time for your friends and family through.

However, if you still aren’t seeing an improvement after making these changes, it may mean the writing is on the wall. If you’re considering looking for a new job with a better work-life balance, why not search through all the jobs on CV-Library today!