The Payroll Blog

News, tips, and advice for small business owners

How To Find Work/Life Balance

Posted On
11/6/2019
By
Stephanie Davis

Do you struggle to transition from work life to home life? Due to busy schedules, endless to-do lists, and the feeling that work never ends, it can be hard to leave work at work. The work/life balance lines get even more blurred if you work from your home. So what are you supposed to do when managing your small business and finding it difficult to leave the work at work? Keep reading for some tips on reframing your post-work routine so you can enjoy the balance you need.

When You Work from Home

1. Shut the door on your work.

If you have a home office, physically close the door on at the end of your day. If you don’t have an office and can’t physically close a door, try turning off your laptop and storing it out of sight or cleaning up your work station to create distance from your work. Finding work/life balance when you are working from home comes with its own challenges, such as burnout from being “on” all the time, so you may have to take physical steps to back away from your to-do list.

2. Get out of the house.

If you work all day at home without leaving, one of the first things you should do when you’re done for the day is to take a minute to get outside of your house. Go for a walk, run a quick errand, or even just grab the mail. Fresh air can bring a range of benefits to your physical and mental health, and it doesn’t have to take a lot of time either. Similar to our point above, physically separating yourself from your workspace can quickly diminish the stress you feel and get you in the mindset to enjoy your downtime.

3. Stick to a routine.

Working from home has many benefits, with the top being flexibility. However, this flexibility can often turn into a bit of a curse. When working from home, it’s easy to fall into a pattern of not following a strict routine and mixing your work tasks with home chores. Setting a routine can increase your productivity and let you focus on the tasks that are most important to you. A routine can also help increase work/life balance by ensuring you have time for hobbies, family moments, and time with friends.

When You Work at an Office  

1. Have something to look forward to.

When you leave at the end of the day, you are likely fried from everything you’ve been juggling. It can be hard to find the strength to do anything when all you really want is to order takeout and enjoy a solid Netflix binge. Pick just one thing to look forward to when you get home to take your thoughts off work. It could be something simple like booking a class at a favorite workout studio, a family dinner, or a favorite playlist or podcast on your commute home. It doesn’t have to be a big thing, but finding something enjoyable to focus on can get you in the right mindset to enjoy your downtime and leave work behind.

2. Do a digital detox.

Between e-mails, social media notifications, and text messages, our phones are glued to us, and just the sound of a notification can distract you and take you right back to a working mindset. When you always feel like you need to be “on”, it can be challenging to keep work out of your home since your technology is usually glued to you. You can fix this by doing some form of digital detox. Whether you silence your phone, keep it in another room, ban phones from the dinner table, or simply shut it down, a break away from your phone can be a great way to decrease post-work stress.

3. Keep your home organized.

Coming home to a disorganized home after a hectic day at work can make it hard to decrease your stress levels. Start changing your habits as soon as you walk in the door. Yes, it’s easy to just throw your keys on the counter and coat on a chair, but it’s just as easy to spend an extra second putting your keys in a spot by the door so you don’t lose them the next morning and hang your coat up to decrease clutter. If something takes less than a minute to do, do it right away. Making small changes throughout the week could potentially help you avoid a weekend spent cleaning and organizing. To minimize stress in the morning on the way to work, get everything ready the best you can the night before. Pick your clothes out, have all of your gym and or lunch bag packed, and set yourself up for success in the morning. Good organization is key for many areas of life and can decrease your stress levels.

Bottom Line

Transitioning from work can be a struggle, and it’s sometimes hard to shut your brain off at the end of the day. Spending some time by practicing mindfulness and getting in the headspace for a night of relaxation can do wonders for helping with the transition from work to rest. Don’t put pressure on yourself to change overnight, but with little tweaks to your routine over time, you should be able to achieve the work/life balance you’re looking for.