Did you know that up to 40% of people say that they feel that their job is very stressful? Stress in the workplace can lessen productivity and job satisfaction. Unhappy employees or stressed workers never perform to the best of their ability.
What you may not realize is that the stress from work bleeds over into your life. It may negatively impact personal relationships, cause you to lose sleep, and may also damage your health.
You should find the balance between work and life if you want to succeed in either one. We need to forget the times we heard, "If you want to succeed, work harder." Ask yourself, "why spend 40-50-hours a week working?" At 4 day week, we say there is a better way to balance! To learn more, check out our 8 ways to increase quality of work life.
4 Tips for Employees Seeking Work Life Balance
When you get up every morning, go to work, come home, sleep, and repeat, things become routine. It can grate on your nerves and stress you out. Who needs that? Here are some easy ways you can start to turn your situation around. Not only will you achieve a higher quality work life balance, but you will feel better in all other parts of your life.
1. Prioritize Work Life Goals
If you look at priorities, people are all over the spectrum. Some focus much of their time on work. Others prioritize family, friends, sleep, fitness, etc.
We need to understand: There isn't enough time in a day for everything to have equal attention.
Ideally, you will choose no more than three "priorities". This will allow you to divide your time more equally. The rest can have moments of time too. However, your priorities are where you should focus your attention. For instance, imagine the priorities of work, family, and sleep. Try your best to work between these hours, so that you have a set time for family and a set time for sleep. Stick to it as much as possible.
If you need to figure out ways that you are wasting your time, keep a diary to track your specific patterns. How much do you really work? Spend time with family? Sleep? Mingle with friends? The pattern can give you a chance to re-evaluate your situation.
2. Make the Most of Work Time
The truth is people in the workplace often allow themselves to be distracted. It's reported that more than an hour each day is spent wasted because of distractions. You may think this is a way to de-stress because you take a moment for yourself, but it also means you fall behind. We encourage you to make a work/productivity plan to avoid feeling the need to multitask.
One great way to do this is to use the Pomodoro Method. Set a 25-minute timer and work for a specific time without allowing yourself any distractions. At the end of that time, you can take care of other personal needs. Grab a cup of water, have lunch, etc. When at work, the task is your priority. When on break, you should not stress over work. At the end of the day, your entire day will be more productive, and you will feel less worn out by the jobs you were doing.
In turn, it will also enable you to get yourself into the "work" zone easier. You will train your mind and body to tackle the job at hand. Whether you work from 9-5 or not, you should be prepared to have everything geared toward work success. Leave your personal life out until the five o'clock whistle blows.
Another technique to make the most of your time is to use the 4 D's of time management:
Depending on how valuable and urgent a task is, placing the task into each one of these buckets will help you manage your time more effectively by focusing on the projects which mater the most.
3. Take Care of Yourself First
People who feel stressed or unwell will not be productive in their days, whether at work or at home. We urge you to take care of yourself. This means ensuring you rest well, eat right, and exercise. A five-minute walk can make you feel better when you return to your desk.
During this time, it may also be beneficial to look at the job you are doing. What do you gain from it? What is the value of what you are doing? By realizing you are doing something important to the company, you may give yourself the boost you need to get through the day.
When you leave work, turn off your phone. Unplug. Forget the emails you didn't send, or the phone calls you didn't make. Set your boundaries and tomorrow will be a better day.
4. Be Realistic about Your Goals
As an employee, it is important to understand that there isn't a single, perfect, work life balance. Your priorities today may not be the priorities tomorrow. You may not have the same goals as coworkers. The only important thing is finding a job that allows you to focus on your overall quality of work life.
4 Tips Employers Can Use to Help Employees Balance Work Life
A good work life balance isn't just something for employees to handle. Company owners and managers should help. You can do this in several ways. Offer options to:
- Work from Home
- Work Shorter Work Weeks
- Remote Work
- Work Part Time
In today's very technology-based world, there are options. People do not always have to be "at work" to be working.
1. Show Appreciation
When at work, recognize people who have gone above and beyond for the company. Give them trinkets or rewards to show you appreciate them. Another way you can do this is to provide more growth opportunities. Opportunities that aren't based specifically on who works the most or the hardest. If they do their job, they earn the right to achieve a promotion or a raise.
Furthermore, show employees that you value them by being a part of their life in small ways. For instance, if an employee is sick or has a family member that is sick, inquire about the situation. Help in the ways that you can. In good times you should show appreciation as well. If an employee getting married, give a small gift or attend if invited.
2. Empower Employees
Trust that they know the job that they are there to do. Rather than stay on them or press deadlines, simply have faith that they will do their job. You may also consider reducing meetings. Your business will not suffer because you have "no meeting" days or certain hours that meetings are off limits. The reason for this is simple. We spend too much time in meetings and often, it is a waste of valuable work time.
3. Hire Carefully
In a business, productivity happens when people work together. Before you hire someone new, make sure that they fit. They should share the values of your company and understand the goals of other employees.
4. Encourage Restful Days
Only 11% of employees feel that they are encouraged to take personal days or mental health days. At 4 day week, we hope that you are willing to help that number become higher. Your employees will be thankful and you will reap the rewards of a more productive team!
We are here to help you both employers and employees achieve a more enjoyable balance. We have a newsletter that contains tips and ideas on increasing employee happiness. It can help you increase productivity while lessening stress. Feel free to sign up or post your own job listings.