Do You Have Work-Life Balance? This Checklist Will Help You Find Out

work-life balance

Having work-life balance is talked about a lot, but what does it really mean? That’s a hard question to answer, because it can mean different things to different people. For a lot of people, it’s about putting their work away when they leave the office or their workday is done. That helps them be fully present for their family or the hobbies they want to engage in during their personal time. Here’s a checklist to consider, when you’re looking for a good balance between work and personal pursuits.

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Simple ways to measure your work-life balance

Are you always on your phone?

If you’re on your phone at all hours of the day, and can’t seem to put it down and pay attention to what’s around you, your work-life balance may not be very strong. There may be times when you have to check your phone because you’re waiting on an important email from a client. Or you might need to send something to your boss on a Friday night. But overall, you should put your phone away during non-working hours and focus on your family, hobbies, or other things around you that aren’t part of your working life.

Are your working hours set?

If you don’t have set working hours, it may be time to change that. With a few exceptions that can happen to just about anyone, you should only be working during certain times. If you have a 9-to-5 job, for example, you should avoid answering emails and doing other work-based tasks after 5pm. That’s your time for other pursuits in your life. You need more than just work, and when you set clear boundaries about your working hours it’s easier to continue to enforce those with bosses, colleagues, and clients.

Do you have time for what really matters to you?

If you have a good work-life balance, you have time for the things that matter. That might be time with your family, a hobby you want to pursue, or nearly anything else that’s important to you and not related to work. That can include evenings off, not working on weekends, taking a vacation, or all sorts of other things that add value to your life. You should feel able to make time for friends and loved ones, for important events as well as small relationship-building moments. If you find that you’re missing out on a lot of the big things in life, or you’re really just not around for the little, day-to-day moments, your work-life balance could need some adjustments.

When it comes to a good work-life balance, the people who are best at it are also good at setting boundaries. They understand when (and how) to say no to their boss and colleagues, and they’re able to unplug and do other things in their life that don’t involve their phones, computers, or other devices.

If your workload is too much and your personal time is too little, it may be time to make some changes for a happier life. Enforcing boundaries can seem stressful at first, but it’s well worth it to reclaim personal time and enjoy a better balance between working and other pursuits that are also important to you. There’s no reason to settle for less than that in life.

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About the Author: Michelle Dakota Beck has worked as a professional freelance writer since the 1990s. During that time she has written everything from product descriptions to full-length books. Her areas of specialization include real estate, home services, legal topics, relationships, family life, and mental health issues. You can find her on WriterAccess.

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