Work-life balance offers us to try to reconcile the two areas of our life, work and personal life, to achieve the right psychological and emotional balance.
Today, in the demanding world of work in which we live, it is easy to lose balance and spend more time working, relegating the most personal sphere to the background. This imbalance not only affects the areas that we stop taking care of, such as family, couples or friendships, but also ends up affecting their own functionality at work and also affects the physical and psychological health of each subject. .
In this article, we will talk about work-life balancewe will see what variables affect the possibility of balance, what psychological consequences have the lack of balance between work and personal life, and how to act to achieve work-life balance.
What is work-life balance?
Work-life balance, or in Spanish the balance between work and life, consists of the degree of balance between work and personal and family life. We know that both factors, both work and family, are important in our lives and therefore it is necessary to devote the necessary time to each, without neglecting either.
In today’s society, where labor demands and the demand for labor are so high, it’s easy for us to focus too much on this area and stop devoting time. time to others.
Each area brings us different things. For example, work allows us to develop our professional career and earn money; Instead, the family is the one that allows us to develop as people, concerning our most emotional part. For this reason, finding the balance between the two is crucial to feeling fully fulfilled.
On the other hand, it should be noted that at present we must ensure that in both sexes it is possible to reconcile all areas. In other words, women and men can develop professionally and personally and engage in both contexts in a balanced and similar way. For this reason, in order to guarantee that the conciliation is carried out and respected by the different companies, a regulation has been established where the different rights available to the workers appear.
Variables that do not allow reconciliation
Various more or less controllable factors can affect reconciliation and make work-family balance difficult.
With reference to the work environment, working long hours or increasing job responsibilities may require more time.
As well, Working from home, what we now call telecommuting, also makes it difficult to separate time that we dedicate to the work of personal and family time. It’s easy for us to miss the schedule and end up working longer hours, which leads to an imbalance.
There may also be variations in the family or personal environment that affect the balance, such as the birth of a child, a loved one being ill, or us falling ill ourselves. For this reason, it is necessary to establish the rights of each worker so that they can meet their professional and family responsibilities.
Violations caused by the absence of conciliation
When we are unable or not allowed to balance work and family, both areas end up being affected, even affecting the mental and physical health of the subject. When you spend too much time at work, you lose balance, it is easy to show symptoms sooner or later related to this increasing demand. Sole devotion to work means that we have no time for other areas of our lives, and in all likelihood end up burning us from workan experience also known as burnout.
The increase in demand in one of the areas and the desire to meet the demands of others cause our rest to be affected and we feel more tired, which can increase stress and thus affect our physical health, increasing the risk of developing some kind of pathology, such as heart disease and our mental health, we will more easily show the typical symptoms of anxiety and depressive disorders.
In the same way, the increase in the demand for work also has repercussions in the social sphere. We don’t spend time with our family, our partner may feel hurt, and our friends may drift away from us, leading to, among other things, a lack of social support and the onset of unstable loneliness.
If we don’t balance and dedicate time to just one area of our lives, we end up harming not only those we leave unattended, but also those we care for, because our motivation and our functionality are affected.
Work-life balance rights
As we have seen, there are regulations that try to reconcile the working environment with personal and family life. In this way, we have the right to ask permission with the intention of devoting more time to our personal life. Permits can be classified into two categories. Paid leave, in this case the time allotted to them, is not deducted from vacation or land and will not have to recover it. We can grant this maternity and paternity leave, both of 16 weeks, for breastfeeding, up to 9 months of the baby and for holidays.
The other type of leave is unpaid leave, in which case the worker will not continue to receive his salary. A distinction is made between leave when it ceases during working hours and the reduction of working time, in this case the salary will be reduced in proportion to the reduction in hours worked.
How to balance work and personal life
Given the alterations or problems that can result from a poor work-life balance, it will be necessary to try as much as possible to seek a reconciliation. If you are unable to handle the situation and find yourself overwhelmed, seeking professional help is the best option for reconciliation.
1. Know your rights
As we discussed in the previous section, workers have rights that can be invoked when necessary. Don’t expect anyone to take care of you, Find out what permits or aids you can apply forin order to be able to balance all the areas and to be able to devote the relevant time to each one.
2. Create a clear timeline
It is important to manage your time well, to be organized and to be able to take advantage of each space. Above all, it is essential to manage well when we work from home or are our own bosses, when we do not have a specific schedule, because in this situation it is easier to end up devoting more hours and therefore losing balance. Make a schedule and make sure it’s as specific as possibletry to organize yourself to be as productive as possible during working hours and thus be able to achieve the objectives set and take advantage of the rest time.
3. Learn to say no
It is essential to work on assertiveness to be able to properly defend your rights. Sometimes out of fear of the consequences we might suffer, for lack of information, for not being able to say that we are not accepting jobs, or for having our labor rights compromised. For this reason, it is essential to know the regulations and defend the rights that belong to us.
Evaluate what activities or tasks you can do and offer your boss your proposal so that you can negotiate and come to an agreement that benefits both of you.
4. At the end of your working day, disconnect completely
It is essential to take advantage of free timesince as we have said, devoting too much to a domain eventually burns out and affects all areas of the subject’s life. Try to separate the time you work, the time you spend with your children, the time you spend with your partner and the time you share with your friends, everything is important and you can’t put one in between. above each other, especially work.
When you are done with your work schedule, turn it off completelystop answering work calls or emails, in case of work, leave the place you have established to work and start doing another different task that will already help distract you focus your attention on others topics. Do activities with your kids, make plans with your friends, and go out to dinner with your partner. These activities are the ones that really allow you to be well and to be more functional and to show more motivation in your work.
5. Take care of your health
A lack of balance between the different areas can lead to physical and psychological health problems. It is crucial that we follow a proper and healthy routine so that our condition is not affected and we are strong in the face of challenges. it can happen. It is essential that we rest the necessary hours, at least 7 hours, can help us to play sports to improve our physical and mental health, since it helps to disconnect, food is also essential to obtain the essential nutrients for the good functioning of our body.