The New Normal: 5 Tips for Work-Life Balance

Determining what works best for you will require some experimenting.

Imagine this: You are working your day-time job at home while knowing you have tons of responsibilities at home. This includes making food and cleaning up your room, while making sure you are on top of the work you are doing. It can be difficult to get the right work-life balance. Are you looking for ways to create a great work-life balance while working from home? Have you ever asked for tips from your friends and colleagues, hoping to refine the steps that you take in order to reach success?

COVID hit the world at a time where no one knows how to proceed and what next steps will look like. People were forced to work at home and find ways to adapt their working style. Working remotely is a new adjustment for many individuals who are not used to working at home, and for others who may have never worked at home. Work-life balance is an important aspect of a healthy work environment. Maintaining work-life balance helps reduce stress and helps prevent burnout in the workplace, especially at home. With no proper working space or a cafe to sit and sip your coffee, let’s make the best of this by creating a working space of your own with the 5 tips for work-life balance at home!

Commit to an end-of-work time

Towards the end of your work day, make a short phone call, sign a document, or respond to an email. This way you end your day on a positive note of completion. There’s gratification in knowing that you elected to push yourself and now have one less thing to do the following morning. Make sure to schedule an end-of-day time where you will end your work. This is extremely important as you do not want to work continuously at home. This is a great way to set up boundaries where once your work time ends, do not take the time to read more emails, look at a report, or continue working on something. 

I try to make sure I am not scheduling any work calls late into the evenings and block off that time for my own well-being. In order to feel like you are separating work and life, it is important to make sure that you turn off all your work and school emails as soon as the clock strikes time. Then I would take the end of the day for a nice movie time or an evening chat and hangout with my family.

Plan Ahead

Using your planner, or digital note-taking application and make a record of all the tasks you need to accomplish, ideally in order of importance. This is a great method to know the tasks you have to complete by the end of each day. 

I have been scheduling meetings and calls through Google Calendar. This classic calendar app offers daily, weekly, and monthly views. You can share your Google calendar with other users, which makes it a great tool for your team calls and assignments. This way you will know what the top priority tasks are that you will have the next day and plan accordingly. Before I go to bed, I write down the three most important tasks I have to get done for tomorrow, and three tasks that would be nice to get done but not mandatory. 

Read Emails In Blocks

Spend only a set amount of hours on your email. Do not keep your email tab open when you are working on an important task. This way, you will not be urged to evert your eye from your task and read through emails. You will be able to save so much more time and dedicate those hours to other parts of your day. 

I used to have my email tabs opened all the time and whenever I receive an email, I would open it. Don’t do this. This can be a huge waste of time throughout the day. Instead block out times of the day to check emails and respond to them, then pick up whatever task is next on your list and move on. Manual checking at specific schedules offers the least interruptions and maximum productivity.

Great insider tip: Holding email to two checks a day results in significantly fewer hours spent daily compared to processing email continuously. Don’t dwell on responding to every email that is coming in. This will reduce your productivity for the tasks that you have to complete that require your attention span and effort in every moment. 

Designate Work-free Zones

Incorporate time for yourself in the midst of zoom calls and video conferencing. It is important to rest your eyes and grab a few snacks to refresh your mind. A good insider tip is to not schedule calls right after another so that you will not feel zoom fatigue to the extreme. 

Step away from your screen and go brew another cup of coffee or make a fruit bowl to replenish your energy. It is important to step away from your work zone and take breaks to make sure you are well taken care of throughout the day. 

Consider Relocating

We are prone to work from the same desk or on a bed. But try exploring workspaces around your home. You’ll likely have several choices readily available, like the kitchen table or your couch. Try different places for different tasks and see which one helps you be most focused and feel free to change it up a little. I like to switch it up between my bedroom desk and my living room table depending on my productivity level throughout the course of the day.

There you have it! Here are the top 5 tips that you can use in order to stay on top of your work and leave time for yourself and self-care. Remember to stay kind to yourself throughout this time.

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