For some, work is life. However, work should not take over your whole life! When starting a new business, it’s important to lead your employees to a comfortable work life balance to keep them happy and maintain a good culture in the workplace. A healthy work life balance can improve employee motivation and help them to be more productive while they are in the office. Work life balance also helps employees avoid getting burned out. Being overly stressed out at work can make your personal life miserable as well. From an employee perspective, it can be a challenge to take care of your family, keep a clean house, make time for your friends and do the activities that make you happy all while working full time. Creating a healthy work life balance for yourself can improve your mood and satisfy your friends and family as well. Here are some ways new business owners can ensure a healthy work life balance for themselves and their employees:
10 Tips for Maintaining a Good Work Life Balance
In most industries, it’s acceptable to unplug after your work day is over. In fact, this is a crucial step in maintaining a good work life balance. Don’t constantly check your email after you leave work, you need time to unwind and relax after a long work day. As a business owner, make it known that employees are not expected to be plugged in after work, employees and business owners alike need time to separate their work lives from their personal to keep productivity levels high.
- Encourage Exercise
Exercising is a great way to let go of some of the stress in your life. It gives us time to focus on something other than work. Employers can set aside an allowance for employees to use for a gym membership or other forms of exercise. It can also be fun to set exercise goals and have office competitions which can motivate employees to live a healthier lifestyle.
- Stick to a Daily Routine
Create a daily routine that achieves the work life balance you desire. Make sure the goals are reachable and stick to the routine. Sticking to a routine that includes activities such as sleeping for 8 hours, doing activities outside daily, exercising and eating healthy will reduce stress levels and improve your lifestyle, leading to better motivation while at work.
- Take Vacation
Taking a vacation at least once a year is important for a healthy work life balance. Vacations are good for our health and make us happier. It’s a good idea to disconnect from work completely for a few days once in a while, even if you cannot afford a vacation. Vacations clear our minds and make us more motivated when we get back into the office. It may be hard to take vacation time as a new business owner but even just a few days off to clear your mind and relax will refresh you and get new ideas flowing for when you return to work. There may not be a ‘good time’ to take a vacation with your work schedule but that’s not a reason to cancel or avoid planning a trip. Most likely, your employer wants you to be well rested and satisfied in the work place, and taking vacation time is a necessity. As long as you give your employer enough notice, they should be fine with you taking some scheduled vacation time! Try to disconnect while on vacation but if that’s impossible, talk to your boss before you leave to find a happy medium as to your connection frequency.
- Reduce Wasted Time at Work
Do you spend a lot of time surfing websites unrelated to your job? Minimizing wasted time at work can help you get more work done each day, decreasing your stress levels once you go home at night. If needed, block the websites you visit too often to reduce the urge to procrastinate. Set yourself up on a schedule to work for a few hours and then take a longer break, instead of many small sized breaks in between getting work done. Breaks are needed once in a while to keep you focused. Taking a quick break to eat a healthy snack or browse your favorite websites will recharge your brain when you return to your tasks.
- Make To-Do Lists
At the end of each day, make a to-do list for the next. This way, you’ll know ahead of time exactly what you have to do the next day which will help you relax for the evening and prepare you for the next morning. Making a to-do list will also help you stick to your daily routine to create the perfect balance between work and your personal life.
- Get Involved with Projects Outside of Work
It’s not healthy for business owners or employees to be fully absorbed in their jobs 24 hours every day. Encourage employees and yourself to get involved in an organization that you’re passionate about, some type of volunteer group outside of work, a community group, or even your own family. Focusing on important projects other than work will help create a good work life balance.
- Have a Good Attitude
No matter how much you love you job, you should try to focus on other things during the evening hours. In other words, you need to spend time ‘not working’ and be able to ‘turn it off’. Having work on your mind all the time can be harmful to your stress levels and your personal life, especially for new entrepreneurs. Talking and thinking about work all the time can reduce your effectiveness, your mind and body both need time to stop doing the same things constantly to be able to come up with fresh ideas!
- Overlap Activities
If you’re struggling between doing the activities or hobbies you love and spending time with friends or family, combine them! Activities like baking, golfing, exercising and many more can be done with the people you love. It’s a great way to create a perfect work life balance while getting the items on your agenda completed.
- Take Time to ‘Do Nothing’
If you have a free night, don’t guilt yourself into getting housework done or going out with friends. It’s good to have time to relax and just do nothing! Taking time for yourself is an important aspect to your work life balance.
There are tons of different things employers and employees can do to encourage a good balance between work and personal life. Doing activities and participating in projects may not work for everyone. It’s up to you to find the best methods to relax and create the perfect balance in your life.