How to keep the Work-Life-Balance when working remotely

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How to disconnect from work and actually relax

If you work from home and have been doing it for a while then you’ve probably mastered the process of getting into the workday mindset to ensure that work actually gets done. You’ve set up your home office and your private and work life so that work happens when it needs to happen.

Don’t always do more.

The problem is that you can easily find yourself over-committed to work, which can make it difficult to stop once the workday is done and your leisure time needs to begin. Work uptime is important, but so is the downtime that lets you recover from working and which helps make your work time more productive.



Maintaining a good work-life balance is essential in ensuring that both your work and your life, in general, are rewarding and fulfilling, so how do you go about disengaging from the workday mindset at the end of your working day?

Whether you are self-employed or working remotely for an employer it can be tempting to blend your work with your life. You can find yourself working while eating breakfast and dinner, or in-amongst leisure activities.

Healthy Boundaries are key

If you have a family or are in a relationship then you may be sneaking in small amounts of work while interacting with the people in your life who deserve more of your attention. Eventually, you will find this approach eroding both your work and your relationships, however. You will realize that you need to add some separation in the form of boundaries and routines that make your life more manageable.

SFHO disconnecting from workYour work and leisure life is all about boundaries. Boundaries let you divide your life into areas to focus your attention on and boundaries let you prevent other areas of your life from bleeding into your current area of focus.

Boundaries can also be a powerful tool to help you disconnect from your work day and relax after the work is done. For boundaries to work effectively though you need clear boundary points or small rituals in your day to mark when a boundary is crossed.

Divide your living space

Ideally, your work life and leisure life should take place in different areas of your home.

A home office is great for organizing your working environment, and it is also good for creating a clear distinction in your brain between the place where work gets done and the place where your leisure time happens. There are some solutions, even if you only have a small space.

Create a routine or ritual

When you go from your home living area to your home office area you probably have a routine that sets you up to begin your workday. You need a similar routine for when it comes time to signal to your mind that the work day is over.

Your change from work time to leisure time should include a routine that lets you know that the workday is ending. This can take the form of tidying up any loose ends in your work, doing end-of-day business accounting, final cleanup of your office space, and anything else you need to do to close out the working day.

SFHO disconnecting from workSFHO disconnecting from work






Pour yourself a tea, take a shower, change to more comfortable clothing, light a candle, put on your favorite “closing time” playlist, and spend some time just sitting or laying down to enjoy the quiet time at the end of the day. Do something to relax your mind and signal to it that the work day is done. It helps some people to fake a commute by going for a short walk.

Give your clients clear office hours

If you have clients then you should have clear hours when your clients can contact you about the work you are doing for them. Your clients should know what these times when they can contact you are and should be (strongly) encouraged to respect them. Just because you work from home, it does not mean that you are always working when you’re home.

It may not always be possible to stick to these rules, but doing so as much as is practical will reduce the stress in your life and make the work you do for your clients more productive.

Let your family help

SFHO disconnecting from workIf you have a family then you should encourage them to help with the process of disconnecting from your work.

Many people are quick to let family members know that they shouldn’t be disturbed while working. You should also tell your loved ones that when you finish up your work at the end of the day and exit your work area, they should start involving you in family activities that would otherwise interrupt your work time. Get them to remind you that work time is over and family time has begun if you start focusing on work outside work hours.


Separating work and free time is essential for remote worker happiness

The quality of the work you do and of the home life you have is hugely dependent on how well you separate your work and free time.

You need to maintain your work-life balance to avoid unnecessary stress and anxiety and keep yourself in a good state of mind. Mastering this balance can be tricky, but your life, in general, will be much more rewarding if you do.

What methods do you use to separate your work from leisure time?

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