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Monday, November 22, 2021

7 Tips For Creating Better Work-Life Balance When Working From Home

Did you know? 60% of Americans have poor work-life balance according to research.

Working from home certainly has many benefits, from greater autonomy, not having to commute daily, to more flexible work hours. However, with freedom comes disorganization for many WFH employees that have since found it difficult to properly balance work and life as a result.

In this post, we look at 7 tips for helping you better separate and balance work and the rest of your life when working from home.

1. Stick to a schedule

Despite the hype on how remote work can increase productivity, it takes a lot to find an effective remote work schedule. That’s why you need to establish a pattern that keeps you consistent and productive throughout the day. Be realistic about what you can achieve during work hours, and have ample time for all the essential tasks on your list. Then include some extra time for the unexpected work, as well as personal time for friends, hobbies, and family.

  • Add uninterrupted focus time in your schedule: Avoid distractions from colleagues, family members, emails, and all the other distractions.
  • Block your work hours: Use a timer to create 50-60 minutes of focus time where you only complete one task at a time.
  •  Schedule meetings during your most unproductive times: Keep meetings to times when you don’t have to work on any complicated task.

2. Set Boundaries at Work

Constant availability leaves no room for delayed responses. Some colleagues are online late in the evening and even on weekends, making it seem like you have to be online all the time to attend to everyone. This could result in increased screen time and frequent interruptions during work.

It’s best to turn off your notifications so you can focus for one meaningful stretch and get work done quickly. Also, only keep a few chats active on limited apps –those that are necessary.

3. Exercise Regularly

Good physical fitness is good, not just for your body but for your brain. Exercise can help you relax, increase productivity and increase energy. Cardio exercises like running on the spot get your heart pumping, helping you stay organized.

You can also do some exercises at your desks, such as stationery curls, shoulder blade pinches, and leg lifts. Experts recommend taking a break from sitting at your desk every 45 minutes to avoid being stationary for too long.  And if possible, go for a walk after you close for the day or do some exercises or stretches at home.

4. Have a Dedicated Work Area

Having a separate area for work helps you stay focused when working from home. A home office plays an important role in switching off when the workday is over. Having separate areas also makes it easier to transit into home mode once you’re done with work. Even if your apartment has only one room, you can assign functions to a particular space as your work area. In addition, don’t take work tools like your laptop along when closing for work.

Pay special attention to your desk, office chair, and home lighting, as these three things affect your comfort the most when working.

5. Have a Proper Lunch Break

With remote workers spending more at work each day, it’s common for people to succumb to the ‘eat-mindlessly-in-front-of-your-computer’ habit. Research has shown that those who take breaks during work are more productive and have more job satisfaction. 

According to Harvard Business Review, companies should limit meetings at certain hours of the day and arrange lunch events among employees.  

Besides having virtual lunch breaks with colleagues, you could catch up with a friend or eat a proper lunch away from your desk.

7. Plan for Your After Work Hours

In order to work longer hours than necessary, it’s essential to plan how you want to spend your time after work each day. Have a closing time to break yourself away from work at a specific time. The remaining part of your day could involve picking up your kid from school, catching a class at the gym, or meeting a friend afterward. Other activities can include taking a long walk in the evening, preparing dinner, or having a family movie evening.

By making plans for your after-hours, you’ll have a specific reason to leave work on time.

In Summary

As a remote worker, finding that sweet spot of work-life balance is essential. It entails prioritizing activities that are important to you. You need to deliberately plan your daily activities to avoid focusing too much on work. By taking regular breaks, exercising, sticking to your schedule, and setting a closing time, you can find a balance. 

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Daniyel Carlson
Daniyel Carlson is a Young Researcher in the field of Data Science & Analytics having research experience of more than 8 years. He has a Masters in Computer Engineering and currently serves as an Editorial Assistant in IGI Global, United States of America. Daniyel also holds honorary positions in the Associate Member of Institute of Research Engineers and Doctors, International Association of Computer Science and Information Technology, International Association of Engineers, Society of Digital Information and Wireless Communications.

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