Work Life Balance
Work life balance is a phrase often thrown around by HR managers and job boards. To you it may feel like something to brush off as unimportant or to focus on when things calm down, but regardless of your employment situation, this balance is important to you and your health.
Maintaining a work life balance can be difficult without the support of your boss. If you feel that their expectations are too high talk to them about it (or an HR person if that makes you feel more comfortable). This is not an excuse to slack off! You are at work to work and should be doing what is asked of you. Bring up your concerns if you are being asked to do too many tasks or complete something in an unrealistic time frame. While it is important to discuss the issue, remember that your boss is asking you to do this task for a reason, so before talking with them try to come up with an alternative plan that would work best for everyone.
Conversely, remember to spend your work hours focusing on work. If you say that you cannot complete a task but spend parts of your day talking to your coworkers or checking your phone, you are not being fair to your company. Keeping a work life balance means leaving life for after work. If there are emergencies or changes to your personal situation that will affect your work tell your boss. They are humans too and understand that situations change.
Once you are done with your work day its time to start focusing on your life again and leave work where it belongs-at work. If you have a setup that requires you to check your work email or even work from home, set boundaries with your boss or even just with yourself. Schedule personal time if necessary or set rules like “I will not check my work email after 8pm.” You can always put an out of office on your email telling people that you will read and respond to their emails when you get back to work in the morning.
If a work situation is stressful and causing you to think about it when you are not at work, try some distraction tactics. This can be as simple as listening to a podcast or watching TV. Your brain will focus on something new and hopefully will leave the work situation alone. If you are constantly thinking and stressing about work while at home, it may be a sign that your work life is overloaded, and you should discuss this with your boss or HR. You (and your company) want your work to succeed. This is not possible if you lay awake all-night stressing about work. Making mistakes because you are rushed or stressed can often result in work needing to be redone, making the process slower than if you had taken your time initially.
If this balance does not sound like something that can be achieved at your current workplace and your boss is unsupportive in your concerns, it may be a sign to look for a new position, job or even career path. Work is part of your life, not all of your life. Do what you need to do to find a balance that works for you and your goals, both personal and career focused.