Out of all the things no one expected from 2020, working from home for the foreseeable future was most likely not on the top of anyone’s list. As companies around the world like Amazon, Facebook, Twitter and more continue to announce their extension, it’s safe to say zoom calls from home are the new normal until further notice.
Working remotely comes with benefits, but it also has a long list of disadvantages. One disadvantage that many – including myself – have fallen victim to is the blurring of the line between work and personal life. However, in COVID times, it's crucial to recharge away from school and work. In July 2020, CNBC estimated that nearly two-thirds of employees were experiencing burnout symptoms from working from home. How can you avoid the burnout?
Have a designated cut off time
When your bedroom turns into your workspace, it can be difficult to turn off and walk away at a decent hour. However, balancing work and personal life means work must stop at some point, and personal time needs to begin. Schedule your cut off time like you schedule your meetings. Tell yourself that work cuts off at a decent hour and hold yourself accountable to it.
Don’t forget your hobbies
Whether it's hiking, crocheting, binge watching a new tv show or painting, we all have hobbies outside of our professional lives. Even though WFH makes the work seem endless, don’t forget to make time with your hobbies! Improve your balance by building time into your day dedicated to practicing your hobbies. If you feel like everyday throws off your balance, build in a minimum of twice a week. Work cannot dictate your entire life, remember who you are outside of it.
Know what works for you
The balancing strategies of a coworker or friend may work from them but not for yourself. That’s okay! The key to balance is understanding what works for you. Try out a few different techniques of tying in your personal life into your weekly work schedule. You may need to experiment a bit to find what works for you. You may find better balance working a little later than others, or by participating in your hobbies more frequently during the week. Whatever you may prefer, find what works for you and stick to it!
The pandemic has uprooted so many aspects of our lives, both professional and personal. Yet, especially in times like these, we have to remember the value of balance. Don’t let your work define your entire life, take care of yourself and take time away. Remember; it's all about boundaries when it comes to the work-life balance.