Healthy work-life balance

3 steps to maintaining a healthy work-life balance

The average Briton will spend 3,507 days at work including 204 days of overtime and 84,171 hours in the office during the course of their career.

With so much time at work, you’re more likely to neglect other aspects of your life, increasing your chance of developing mental health issues by 40%.

As such, it’s imperative that you look after yourself and your well being.

In this blog post, we share our top three tips; to ensure you’re always performing at optimum levels and reducing your chance of getting burnt out.

Step one: Take care of yourself

Is your back starting to ache? Or maybe your wrist is hurting a bit? These can all be triggered by sitting with a bad posture at your desk and can result in long-term health issues.

To avoid these problems, which are common amongst most office professionals, review your desk and work space. Ensure your keyboard and mouse are set up correctly and that you’re using a wrist or backrest if needed. It’ll keep aches and pains at bay whilst helping your posture.

Here’s how to keep your posture at its best:

  • Step one: keep your pelvis neutral with your buttocks against the back of your chair
  • Step two: always keep your ears, shoulders, and hips aligned
  • Step three: try to sit upright and maintain the normal curve of your back (Use a lumbar back support if your chair doesn’t have lumber support)
  • Step four: keep your hips and knees at a 90 degree angle
  • Step five: keep both feet flat on the ground and use a foot stool if necessary
  • Step six: keep your forearms parallel with the floor, resting on your desk
  • Step seven: place your computer monitor 18-24 inches from your face with the top 1/3 of the monitor at eye level
  • Step eight: use an ergonomic keyboard and mouse to help support your wrists and hands

Going to the gym is also a sure-fire way of maintaining your health and fitness, but sometimes you might need to juggle personal commitments such as collecting your children from school with going to the gym. If time is limited then try out yoga at home, it’ll help clear your mind of those pesky work stresses and strengthen your core muscles, without the need to go to a fitness class!

Step two: Work more efficiently

Working longer hours to manage a growing to-do-list and feeling there’s never enough hours in the day is a common scenario faced by many working professionals. In fact, according to a recent study of British employees, almost half of those surveyed work outside of their contracted hours, for over an hour every day including weekends. A whopping 45% did this because they feel they have too much to do.

Sometimes, better time management might help you juggle your workload more efficiently. For example using apps like Trello to help you prioritise deadlines and tasks, picking up the phone to make a call rather than typing another email and trying to have a scheduled time for checking your inbox, can help you be more productive, and work more smarter.

Step three: Set priorities and goals

Reflect on what’s important to you in achieving a healthy work-life balance, and then set achievable professional and personal goals, relating to your career, health and relationships.

That could be cutting out tasks that add no value to your working day, so you can make time for more strategic activities, that’ll help you develop your career further, and get that promotion you’ve been working towards.

For example, if there’s a skillset you wish you had and there’s an online professional course that can help you, but you’re struggling to fit it into your core working hours. Think about what admin tasks you could remove and replace with your training course, which’ll help you work towards that promotion.

By paying attention to how you use your time during your working hours and outside of your workday, including reflecting on where your time can be used better, you can structure your week and prioritise your time. This’ll ensure your productivity isn’t derailed, and help you maintain a good work-life balance.

Check out these time management apps which’ll help you keep your goals and priorities in line:

  • Evernote
  • Wunderlist
  • TickTick
  • Workflow

If you’ve got some tried and tested tips that have helped you maintain a good work-life balance throughout your career, then feel free to share them with us via @WaxDigital on Twitter. We’d love to hear from you!