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Work Life Balance Tips to Help You Define the Line Between Work and Home

Work Life Balance Tips to Help You Define the Line Between Work and Home

Tips to help you define your work/life boundaries

Traditional ideas of 9-5 office workers heading home and putting all thoughts of work aside until the following day no longer apply for many of today’s employees. According to Randstad, a leader for staffing, recruitment and HR Services, in order to achieve work life balance, it’s important for workers to set boundaries between their work and personal lives as the line between work and home continues to blur.

According to Leandra Harris, Executive Vice President of Human Resources for Randstad Canada, smartphones, Wi-Fi, laptops and other advances in technology are making it easier and easier to blur the line between work and home. “The blurring boundary between work and home life is creating a new office environment that has innumerable benefits to business, however, in order for employees to avoid burnout and stress, measures must be taken to achieve a balance between the two so it remains a benefit, rather than a liability,” she says.

Be clear about your availability.

People will respect your boundaries when you lay them out clearly. Doing this will lessen interruptions from family and friends and will also help you focus on getting things done within the timeframe you create for yourself.

Create routines that will help you transition to and from your work day.

Develop a routine that marks the beginning of your work day and another that marks its end. It could be as simple as a work out, or eating breakfast before getting to work and then a leisurely walk or listening to your favourite song on your way home. Do whatever works for you.

Set up “no work” times.

Set aside a time and space where you will not do work. For example, take a day, or a few hours, each week to rejuvenate and reconnect with the people and things that are most important to you.

Harris says that when you give your personal and leisure time 100% of your attention; it recharges you and allows you to give 100% to your work when you return to it. “Realistically, most people need a break from their work. Even the most dedicated worker needs a life outside of work, no matter how much they enjoy it,” she says.

Your own happiness and success can be directly affected by the boundaries that you establish to keep your home life separate from your work environment, says Harris. “Don’t consider the act of boundary setting to be a selfish one,” she says. “There’s nothing wrong with defining the environment that will allow you perform to your very best.”

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3 comments

  1. Great topic, and we all know how difficult it is to realize that “it” cannot be completed in one day, especially the “newbies.” And I agree Gary, “your own happiness….” is spot on, and in my opinion experience is primary in teaching effective time management….qualitative rather than quantitative. Excellent suggestions to attain that “Balance.”

  2. Yes, it is important to separate your work environment from your home environment, at least for us 99%ers.

    What caught my eye and what I feel most people get wrong is the part about “Your own happiness and success can be directly affected …”

    In our society, people equate Happiness with Success, so they spend their lives striving for Success in the hopes that they will be Happy.

    Unfortunately, for us 99%ers it doesn’t work that way. For the other 1%, their Success is their Happiness.

    We have got to face the fact that we are all different, unique, special, with gifts that we must build upon instead of always trying to improve our weaknesses, our shortcomings (based on what we are told are our shortcomings – because in truth we are all already perfect and therefore have no shortcomings).

    If only we could focus on and build upon what we love doing and are good at, maybe it won’t matter if our work and home lives intermingle.

  3. Great article and oh, so true. Blackberries & iPhones keep us so easily connected to work that for the dedicated workaholic like me (guilty), it is sometimes difficult to know where work life ends and home life begins. Learning to shut down your smart phone is a good place to start.

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