How to Get a Better Work-Life Balance in Five Steps

Posted on Thursday, May 24, 2018 by The Office Zen MasterNo comments

As last week was national Mental Health Awareness week, we’ve been thinking a lot about mental health. With 56% of employees reporting that they’re overly stressed, one way you can reduce stress and improve your mental wellbeing is to get a better work-life balance. At our leading London recruitment agency, we like to see happy, healthy staff. So today, we’ll look at ways to ensure you get a happier work-life balance!

1. Know your hours

To get a better work-life balance, you first need to know what your current balance, or imbalance, is. An easy way to do this is using an app (such as RescueTime) to monitor the hours you spend working. This way, you’ll know how many hours you actually spend at work, on which tasks, and what your most productive hours are.

If you discover you’re working well over your contracted hours, then you need to address this with your manager. It might be that the extra hours are paid in overtime, or given as time in lieu, but if it’s giving you a poor work-life balance, then don’t just carry on working more hours than you’re happy with.

2. Cut work-non-work hours

If you’re working the right number of hours, maybe the issue is those work-related hours that eat into your home life. It can feel like you have a poor work-life balance if you spend ages getting ready for work and have a long commute before you even reach the office. Can you reduce these by preparing your work clothes and lunches for the week ahead, or not travelling during rush hour?

Perhaps you can do condensed hours over 4 days, so you get more days off every week? Can you work from home some days? This might not be possible in customer-facing roles such as receptionist jobs, or PA jobs where you need to be on hand for your boss during specific hours, but you should still ensure you’re not overworking.

3. Work smarter

Sometimes, we over-work because we feel we need to get the work done at all costs. To fix this, we can often work smarter. Working smarter means making better use of your time, eliminating the pointless and time-wasting tasks, and working at the times when you’re most productive.

If you get more done in less time—it reduces the temptation to work more hours than you should. Can you cut out any unnecessary tasks? Perhaps you can adjust your working hours to suit the hours you’re most productive?

4. Switch off

A bad work-life balance can happen when we mentally take work home with us. Whether it’s worrying about that upcoming presentation, our huge workload, or workplace issues—we give up a lot of our time thinking about work outside the office.

When you get home from work, you need to mentally switch off—and this means switching off your work phone too. In demanding EA jobs, you might find that you need to be on call for your boss at strange hours, but it’s important to set clear boundaries and ensure you have downtime. One way to switch off is writing a to-do list before you leave the office each day.

5. Make peace with your day

Another reason we may suffer from a bad work-life balance is poor sleep. Getting good sleep is important to ensure we’re productive, happy, and healthy. If you’re lying awake thinking or worrying about work, then this can be detrimental.

Before you go to sleep, think about the things you’ve achieved today, how you can improve, and what you’re thankful for. This should help you get a better night’s rest, and a better work-life balance overall.


For more tips to make your work life better, stay tuned to the Love Success blog. If it’s time for a new job, get in touch today to find out about temporary or permanent PA jobs, office support roles, and more.


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