Business/Career Lifestyle

Tips for Better Work-Life Balance

Tips for Better Work-Life Balance
Written by Omolola Akinyemi

Are you concerned about the effect of your work schedule on your mental and physical health (or other important areas of your life)? You are obviously not alone. You are likely experiencing what thousands of other people are facing, hustling day and night to make ends meet. And above all, you should target having a satisfying life outside the office. So it is important to work towards attaining a better work-life balance for your all-round fulfilment.

Remember that the primary reason you are engaged in that job is to earn enough to cater to your personal needs. Furthermore, you need a better work-life balance to avoid burnout and frustration.    

What does Work-Life Balance Mean?

Simply put, work-life balance is establishing a middle ground, or meeting point between your work (or business) demands and personal needs. In essence, your work should not unduly block out the other aspects of your life that are equally important. Neither work nor personal life should adversely affect one another, nor affect the subject of that connection: your very self. That consideration should include your family life, hobbies, recreation, health, vacation, and relationships.


Work-Life Balance: The Origins

The coinage ‘work-life balance’ originated sometime in the 1980s, though the challenge had been around for centuries. Workers struggled, yearned for, and demanded fair labour practices in times gone. Also, human rights advocates of the 20th Century clamored for improved work conditions. At that time, working hours extended beyond 100 hours per week (and obviously with a back-breaking impact).

And it became particularly important for women, who struggled to preserve their families alongside heavy work schedules. For women, it became increasingly important to work with bosses and organizations that show empathy toward motherhood and a balanced life outside the office. Merely demanding work efficiency, but showing little consideration for the well-being of workers is seriously counter-productive.  

Today, it is widely understood that creating a better work-life balance is hardly a gender issue. Virtually everyone needs it. Attaining a better work-life balance addresses concerns over how to manage your time, energy, and resources; prevent burnout, and reduce stress. 

Creating a Better Work-Life Balance: The Benefits 

Some advantages come with having a better work-life balance, as enumerated below. 

Better Quality of Health

A consciously planned work-life balance gives employees more time and opportunity to pay attention to their overall health and well-being. It further reduces the following health risks:

  • stress
  • On-the-job fatigue
  • Lack of concentration
  • Poorly-managed health conditions
  • Unwholesome weight gain
  • Smoking and drinking addictions

Lower Risk of Burnout

By creating and sustaining a better work-life balance, there is a much lower risk of mental and emotional fatigue. Mental and emotional fatigue may be caused by extensive work-hours, and not getting enough rest. Rigid work policies, or a clash between personal values and the demands of the work, are also prime causes of emotional and mental fatigue. 

Also Read- The Benefits of Mentorship for Career Growth

Better Productivity & Creativity at Work

Studies have shown that workers exposed to over 50 work-hours in a week exhibit significantly poor performance at work. However, when workers are allowed some flexibility at work (such as choosing where to work from and how long), it gives them great relief. They can take intermittent breaks, and thus be renewed and refreshed. They also end up happier and far more creative, even more agile at problem-solving. Workers are also more willing to cooperate with superiors and colleagues alike. 


Enhanced Mindfulness

There is increased focus and awareness of the present. This will directly impact your productivity in a positive way.

Improved Job Retention

Workers who are satisfied with their work due to an improved work-life balance are more likely to stay longer in that organization. This is pretty obvious. Since they have more time and opportunity to sort out their personal lives, they would not feel abused or neglected at work either. Therefore they experience increased job satisfaction.

Valuable Tips for a Better Work-Life Balance

Don’t Expect Perfection

Remember first that what works for someone else might not work for you. And creating a work-life balance is somewhat like a moving target. Conditions may change from time to time, and you may need to make adjustments as well. So it is a continual process of reorganizing and planning your work side-by-side with your personal schedule to see what works.

Identify What is Important to You

You may need to list out the tasks you plan to do in a day (whether at work or home). Then deliberately include those other activities you enjoy doing, that excite you, in that list. You know those activities that would improve your lifestyle but you have not been attending to. Fun events, exercise, rest, games, delegating tasks to other people, additional tools, or third-party help to reduce your labor. So long as they help you to achieve greater balance, then prioritize such activities (and not merely focus on doing chores or work only). 

Focus more on your Mental and Physical Health

Carve out one or two specific activities that you would do regularly to take care of your mental and/or physical health. Focus on rest, meditation, nutritious meals, or any other such activity. Don’t joke with that self-care routine, and don’t oust it in favor of an eternity of work without a break. 


You are strictly not running a one-man show, and you are not a know-it-all. To avoid mental and physical stress, learn to focus on your strengths and handle only what you can do well. As for other tasks you are not good at, get someone else who is an expert to do it for you. This rule applies to every aspect of your life, both personal life and workplace. 

Set and Maintain a Reasonable Working Hours Schedule

You should have established working hours outside of which you must rest and cool down. And let your clients, coworkers, and boss(es) know about that schedule. You can also engage time-tracking and/or communication apps (like Calendar app or your social media handles) to remind you and your clients about your work schedule. Even when working from home, set your work schedule as well. 

Practice The Art of Saying No

It is important to set boundaries for yourself and stick to it. Do so before that boss, colleague, or loved one stretches you beyond what you can handle in the name of seeking help. Better you learn to say NO to that request that would overburden you, in an attempt to please others. 

Be Result-Oriented

It would likely be more satisfying to conclude certain important tasks in a day, than to attempt to do several tasks in the same period. So the quantity of work done is not half as important as getting the most important things done first. Think and act on that. 

Plan a Getaway

Go on vacations to unwind and release the pent-up stress.  Unplug and unwind when it is necessary. To unplug means to put away your phone and focus on resting and rejuvenating yourself. Resist the urge to indulge in any app or internet tool that will keep your attention fixed on your phone. Let your eyes and mind calm down while you leave the office and other essential chores by the wayside. 




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About the author

Omolola Akinyemi

A Computer Science graduate of UNILAG, I hail from Ekiti state of Nigeria. An astute teacher, learner & admin assistant of many years experience. I love technology, innovation, and Nature. A problem solving mentality is important to me. The future is only seconds away, and I believe I can define the future now. You can also.

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