After the pandemic, many of us started working from home. Even though people are returning back to the office, many are still working from remote locations. Having a work life balance working from home can be very difficult.
Naturally, we all try to figure out what is a good work home life balance. Before the pandemic, people worked for 8-9 hours and then came back to their families. But what do you do when your family is also part of the work life?
With this new element added to our life, the definition of “Work Life Balance” has completely changed. It can be frustrating trying to juggle between meetings, your child’s online classes and managing housework. To add to it, your boss expects you to pick up calls at odd hours and even finish deadlines on weekends.
What Is Good Work Life Balance?
A healthy work life balance is met when all our time is not taken up by work. When we are working from home maintaining this balance is very important. Therefore, we need to change some parts of our schedule to achieve a work life balance working from home. Here is a list of what is good work life balance. We will also give you simple ways to put these tips in practice.
Building Boundaries at WorkThe key to having a work life balance while we work from home is building boundaries. This means that you need to set some rules with your boss and colleagues. If you get a call from your boss late in the night, you can politely inform them that it is family time and you would not be available. Alternately you can turn off message notifications from after work. If your team mates know when you are not available, they will not disturb you. It is possible that your colleagues are not aware of your work from home schedule, so sharing this information would be useful for them.
Maintain Boundaries at HomeJust as you would inform your office about your schedule, make sure you inform your family as well. In order to have a healthy work life balance working from home, your family needs to know when you are free. Be sure to inform them of any important meeting during the day. This way they wont disturb you at that time. Moreover, if you have to complete at deadline, mention it to your family so that they know you are not available.
Plan Your DayAnother important aspect of maintaining a good work life balance is to have a daily routine. Just because you are not leaving the house, does not mean you cannot get ready for the day. One issue that everyone faces while working from home is sticking to a schedule. However, you can change this by making a small alteration in your schedule. You can wake up at the same time as you did when you went to the office, follow the same morning routine, and then start work. Similarly, you can follow the same routine as you did when you worked in office. A good way to do this is by designing a work space for yourself. Along with this have a start and end time when you are working. As much as possible, try and follow the plan you have made. This will help in managing a healthy work life balance working from home. Whenever possible, take the weekend off. Do work over the weekend only when it is urgent, otherwise keep it for the coming week.
Take a Lunch BreakJust because you are not going to work, does not mean you don’t take breaks. Therefore, when you plan your day, schedule your breaks as well. Have a proper lunch break of 30 minutes without looking at your work or taking work calls. You can also take a 15-20 minutes tea break, if that was part of your regular work schedule.
Make Time for YourselfAs we mentioned earlier, a good work life balance comprises work, family time, and time for yourself. Focusing only on work can be very tiring, therefore it is important to also make time for yourself. After or before work take some time out to do something that you enjoy. Alternately, you can also exercise every day. Apart from this, plan an activity you can engage in after work. This can be cooking something new, reading, painting, drawing, and so on.
Plan Family TimeWhen trying to attain work life balance working from home, you have to give enough time to family as well. If your family members are also working from home, you can plan meals together. If both, lunch and dinner are not possible, the whole family can get together for one meal. Alternately, post work games can be planned with the whole family.
Network and Build New Relationships While Working from HomeWhen we are working from home, we may feel disconnected from others. If you miss meeting people, there are some ways that this can change. You can plan coffee meetings or vendor visits. You can also join a co work space to meet new people. If you are not able to step out right now, you can opt for joining networking groups or online communities with similar interests.
Don’t Use the Computer When FreeIf you want to really maintain a good work life balance while working from home, don’t use your computer when you are free. What we mean by this is when you take a break, keep your computer aside. Don’t use your work computer for leisure. Just as you build a boundary between work and personal life, it is important to have separate devices for work and play.
Why Is Work Life Balance Working from Home Important?
Always remember that just because we are working from home doesn’t mean we should forget to live life. Remind yourself that only the space of work has changed. Therefore, try to ensure you do not reach a burnout. Burnout can take place when we overwork without taking a break. Another issue that can happen due to overwork is chronic fatigue. Long-term chronic fatigue can cause tiredness, muscle or joint pain, insomnia, difficulties concentrating and so on. Therefore, it is important to make these changes before the issue becomes more serious. If you wish to learn more about how to manage work life balance and avoid burnout, check out our course on “Chronic Fatigue“.