Our careers mean a lot to us and shape the way we live our lives, but when does a career become a burden upon an individual's wellbeing? The Health and Safety Executive estimates that 440,000 people in the UK reported that work-related stress was making them ill. Long and fruitful careers do indeed require hard work to achieve longevity, yet we need to take certain approaches to ensure that the symmetry of a work-life balance is sustained. Here are a few tips.

  

1) Don’t take work home

In this digital age we find ourselves checking our emails on our phones outside of working hours, such as during lunch, in the evenings, at the weekend and even whilst in bed. Some industries and certain jobs, such as teaching, do require additional work; however, it’s still important to switch off and embrace time away from the office. When you turn off your computer and leave the workplace, try to put everything work-related on hold until the next morning, that way you’ll find yourself enjoying your evenings and personal life.

  

2) Learn to say “No”

You’re not Superman. You can’t do everything. Taking up extra projects when you simply can’t will eat away at your own time. It’ll also stop you from being productive and split your efforts in the workplace. Don’t feel guilty if you say “no” to something, everyone has to at some point, just make sure to say it kindly and explain why if required.

  

3) Sleep well

In order to function properly we need at least seven hours sleep, although some individuals can function properly with less. One of the most common signs of stress is the inability to get a good night’s kip, which is why it’s important to allow yourself enough time to wind down and recuperate. Studies have shown that not getting enough sleep leaves people unable to detach work thoughts during their leisure time, which results in a fracture in the work-life balance.

  

4) Look at the bigger picture

Careers require you to make sacrifices, big and small, but it can sometimes become hard to maintain equilibrium. It’s therefore important to take a step away from your work bubble and consider how you feel. Do you enjoy your job? Are you happy? Are you allowed to spend time working remotely? As many as 60% of people in the UK are reportedly unhappy in their job. There are hundreds of new doors opening if you wish to change career paths, but if you don’t go looking you’ll never find them.

  

5) Ask for help

When all is said and done, it’s important to know just when to ask for help. Reaching out to colleagues, friends or family for support and advice is not a weakness. In fact, repressing your stress is only likely to put more of a strain on your working life and affect your productivity in the workplace, so be more open to sharing your thoughts and accepting a helping hand.

    

work night out