Creating Work/Life Balance in an Imbalanced World

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By Rae Steinbach

The internet has made it possible for workers across a wide range of industries to get tasks done from anywhere. Nowadays, your bedroom can double as your office. Continuous performance management review software makes it easier than ever for leaders to track employee performance, regardless of location. The benefits of this are obvious. Clearly, employees can be more productive when they don’t have to be in the office to get work done.

These advantages come at a cost, though. Being able to work from anywhere means you’re also able to work at any time. Reports indicate that people who work remotely generally experience greater stress than people who work in an office, as they’re likely to put in more hours. They also have a tendency to allow their personal and professional lives to overlap.

This doesn’t need to be the case. It’s possible for remote workers to take advantage of technology without taking on more work than they can handle. The following tips will help.

Pretend You’re at the Office

If you did work primarily in an office, you’ve be used to having a general routine. There would be a specific time each day you arrived at work, a general time you typically left, and defined boundaries you’d maintain outside of work.

For instance, many office-based employees won’t answer work emails after they leave for the day. Establishing a routine and boundaries similar to the kind you’d maintain if you commuted to work each day helps you avoid burnout.

Stay in Touch

Experts point out that remote workers who have the opportunity to communicate with their managers regularly are typically more engaged with their work. Being engaged can fight off stress by making work more enjoyable and rewarding.

If you’re a remote employee, ask your supervisor if you could set up processes for regular communication sessions. Managers, on the other hand, should be sure to check in with their remote team on a daily basis.

Set Deadlines

According to surveys, remote workers often find that it’s easier to be distracted when working from home than it is when working from an office. Everything from family members to TV shows can cause a remote employee to be inattentive to their work. This makes it easy to fall behind on tasks, resulting in more stress.

Avoid this by setting deadlines and sticking to them closely. Managers can also use online tools to track the weekly progress of their remote employees, making sure everyone stays on task.

Travel

If you can work from anywhere, take advantage of that freedom. Taking working vacations in areas you’ve always wanted to visit gives you a simple way to unwind when you’ve completed your daily assignments. If you’re confident you’ll have the discipline you need to focus on your work during the day, you can explore and enjoy yourself more at night.

Engage with Your Team

Working remotely may be convenient, but it can also be isolating. Don’t forget to get out during the day. Prioritize spending time in places where you’ll be around other people.

It’s also a good idea to keep in touch with other members of the team. You may not share an office, but you all play an important role in making sure the company reaches its goals.

Forging relationships with your other remote coworkers can boost your engagement and help you feel more invested in your work. By staying in touch with other team members and applying these suggestions, you’ll avoid the kind of stress that’s easy to develop when you work from home.

David Mizne, 15Five.com

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