With the rise of remote work because of the coronavirus, many people are struggling to keep their work and personal life separate. When your place to relax and zone out suddenly becomes your money-making station, it’s easy to get confused where work stops and play starts.
Working at home means you have easier access to your bed and can doze off anytime. You may switch the television on and get buried on reruns of your favorite sitcom. You may check your social media minute after minute without superior monitoring your open tabs. The temptation is there, and it’s harder to resist.
It can be a completely different picture if, say you’re a working single mother of two elementary school children. While attending to their basic needs, you also have to watch over their online learning as well as deliver and finish your work tasks. You don’t know what to prioritize and these blurry lines between work and personal life are driving you crazy.
You are not alone. A work-life balance has been an age-old problem. Even before COVID-19, people have already talked about time spent on work versus time spent with loved ones and for personal hobbies. People have been clamoring for fair labor conditions since the 1900s. The term work-life balance was coined in the 1980s at the height of the women’s liberation movement. Working women were faced with the challenge of handling a household while maintaining a living.
Nowadays, work-life balance refers to creating a harmony between work and personal life in order to work productively while at the same time, being able to manage stress and avoid burnout. It has taken a new form in this era of remote work and we’re here to help you deal with the new challenges posed by the pandemic.
1. Strive for a realistic work-life balance.
Every work and life situation is different so for you to strike a balance, you must first acknowledge that it can’t be perfect. No matter how you want to stay on schedule, there will be times that an unforeseen problem will come and you would have to deal with it. This means you have to be able to adjust and work calmly under pressure. When you acknowledge its imperfect nature, that’s when you can work on a more realistic schedule and account for emergencies or things that are beyond your control.
2. Set clear ease in and ease out a transition to work.
You don’t commute anymore to work because your office is just a room away from your place of rest. This means your mind does not have the opportunity to mentally separate the workplace from your home environment. It would help if you set a clear transition in your mind that hey, I’m done resting and it’s now time to work. Do your usual morning routine of eating breakfast, washing your face, and brushing your teeth. Afterward, try your best to dedicate time to meditation. This would help you to prepare for a whole day of work. You may also do activities that account for your commute time such as exercise before logging in to work or walk your dog outside for a nice morning wake-up. Do the same after you log out of work before you “return home” and relax.
3. Break a sweat.
When you’re stressed and need a mood lifter, exercise can help reduce your anxiety and shift your focus. You may get frustrated when you can’t exercise anymore because you are too loaded with work. Solve this frustration by investing in a desk bike.
Flexispot offers a Sit2Go 2-in-one fitness chair that’s perfect to burn some calories while working. It has customizable cardio that you may adjust resistance levels based on your fitness goal and a calorie tracker for you to be able to monitor your progress. And if you’re reading this within September 27 to 29, 2021, you’re in luck because Flexispot is celebrating its fifth Standiversary. The desk chair, along with other best-selling items is on sale for up to a 40% discount. You may get the Sit2Go 2-in-one fitness chair at $279.99 which is $120 less than its original price of $399.99.
4. Eliminate time-wasters.
Set and communicate clear time boundaries. Let your family members know that you are at work and you have deadlines to finish. The same goes with your work like for instance, you may ask your superior if you can skip a conference meeting where your presence is not needed.
You have to know what your priorities are and put them on your urgent to-do list. Everything else that is not on the list should not take up your time or should be done after you’ve dealt with your prioritized tasks.
5. Don’t skip lunch.
We all need a time-out so force yourself to have lunch even when you don’t feel like it yet. You’ll be able to show up for your work or deliver a better work performance if you’re not famished. You are not a superhero and your mind needs to rest. It’s the same thing when you used to work at your office. You sometimes get carried away with your work but when the clock strikes 12, you get up and buy lunch. Don’t kill this routine when you start working at home.
Don’t deprive yourself of social time. We are after all not isolated beings and need to interact with other human beings as well. Working at home alone can already feel isolating so don’t live in a cave and shut off from others. Talk to your available workmates at set work breaks so that your need for socialization is satisfied.
7. Log off and disconnect.
When it’s time to “go home,” completely log off and disconnect from work. You have a right to ignore work when it’s already outside of “office” hours. To be courteous, you may reply and say you’re out of work and you’ll deal with it as soon as work starts the next day. You have to be firm with this to not get exploited and for you to have that realistic work-life balance we’re all aiming for.