Achieving work-life balance
What is work-life balance and why is it important?
Work-life balance means something different to everyone, but it is an important aspect of a healthy work environment. Work-life balance is essentially meaningful daily achievement and enjoyment in all aspects of your life: work, family, friends and self.
Achieving this balance of achievement and enjoyment across each aspect of your life is important because it helps reduce stress and helps prevent burnout in the workplace which can impact personal relationships, physical and psychological health and overall enjoyment of life.
How to achieve work-life balance?
Job insecurity and financial burden are contributors to people taking on too much. It is vital to find a way to separate from your work day so that when you get home you can focus on other aspect.
Sometimes this is as simple as having a shower or bath, massage, going for a run or walk, taking the dog for a walk, catching up with friends or cooking a nutritious meal.
Be able to identify your triggers and when you need a break. Engaging in and cultivating a healthy workplace culture, doing things like eating lunch with other people, going for a lunch time walk, finding social connection through sport or shared interests with friends and family.
Understanding what you can achieve on any given day or week and being able to ask for help from a colleague or your manager when you feel overwhelmed. A few activities to consider include:
- listening to music or a podcast during your commute
- staying off the phone after hours
- utilising annual leave and planning for it
Organisations can also play their part in fostering healthy working environments by providing opportunities for professional growth and social connection.
Sharing the workload
Sometimes people wrongly assume that they can’t share their workload with others, or there is a sense of reactive urgency around getting things done. Planning your day and using the right tools to manage time can be very effective.
In busy environments it is important to know when you can get support from others. We can help each other by reaching out and offering to take a load off someone when they are stretched.
Getting the right support
Striving for work-life balance is about understanding that each of us exists outside of our work environment and no matter who you are or what your role is, we all have challenges and responsibility and need to encourage and support each other to wind down and work towards a healthier balance.
Our St John of God Community Mental Health Services provide a range of mental health and wellbeing services to meet the needs of people with mental health issues. Our services provide tailored low-cost or no-cost therapy, counselling and strategies that help vulnerable people in Victoria and Western Australia turn their life around.
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