26 Sep 2020, 19:05

National Work Life Week Taking Out the Stress

In the before times, life was simple. You got up in the morning, had your breakfast, then went on your journey to work. You'd spend 8 or 9 hours at work, then came home.

OK, so even before Covid life wasn’t that simple, but you knew the difference between what was work and what was your home-life.

Then Covid came along. We were thrust into a new regime of working from home. The dividing lines between work and home became a very blurred area. You could end up working longer hours, even into the evening. Or you'd have to take some time out during the day to sort out kids, or general daily chores. What we started to notice was a whole new way of not just working, but living.

October sees a campaign for National Work Life Week.

This campaign is not aimed at families alone.  The national work-life week begins on 12th October this year. It's an initiative created to encourage both employers and employees to focus on their professional wellbeing and the work-life balance.

Benefits of a positive work-life balance

There are many advantages for your organisation for promoting a healthy professional balance. By following work-life balance best practices, you can ensure a happier and healthier life. Some of the best approaches include:

  • Maintaining structure consistency.
  • Offering engagement opportunities.
  • Allowing a flexible schedule.
  • Encouraging holiday time, rather than presenteeism.
  • Offering an hour lunch break.
  • Providing time off for life events.
  • Engaging in team-building exercises.

Work-life balance examples

Depending on your duties and roles and your personal needs, there are many ways to support a healthy balance.

Telecommuting: Covid has made this an everyday part of business. It does have many advantages in both lockdown and ordinary circumstances. It cuts down on the need to travel great distances to connect with clients and colleagues in other offices. However, remember that you must set time in your diary for work and non-work. It's like the early days of mobile phones. We used to say that we are contactable anywhere and at any time. You should not be made to feel guilty for turning the laptop off outside of your standard work hours.

Policies: Further to the previous point, employers should put in place policies that protect your leave periods and working hours. They should be flexible enough not to make you feel like you have to account how you are spending your day or time off. This policy encourages a healthy work-life balance.

Training: Your managers are the first port of call with your employees, so they're in the best position to help them improve their work-life balance. By training them, they're able to identify the signs of stress, burnout, and other issues and address them accordingly.

Visit https://workingfamilies.org.uk/campaigns/national-work-life-week/ for an information pack that can help you and your employees find ways to improve your work-life balance.