Work-life balance

One of the biggest challenges is to maintain a work-life balance. Especially when you are still adapting to a new environment, new schedules and tasks can be overwhelming, you may find yourself sacrificing your private time to complete your work. Working from home diminishes the boundary between work and personal life – work-life balance needs to be made a priority if this is the case.

“It is hard to hang out with my friends after full-time. Even if we did, we are all ‘zombie-like’, and we can’t hang out too long cause everyone needs to leave early. My work and social life is not balanced at all.”  – Fresh Grad, age 22

Signs of burnout

  • Fatigue and tired all the time
  • Headache
  • Feeling on edge or irritated
  • Feeling trapped and helpless
  • Loss of interest to activities
  • Feels detached from the world
  • Not wanting to meet friends or family

Learn more about the impact of stress on our mental health here:

Finding balance

Maintaining a work-life balance is never easy. This is especially true when you are new to the workplace and there is a lot of catching up to be done, or you feel the need to perform well and stand out from the crowd. We may find ourselves stressed out and on the verge of burning out just to complete our jobs or fit into the work environment. While finding balance takes time, here are some tips to help you to maintain a work-life balance:

  • Explore and set your boundaries. For instance, setting a time to check and reply to emails or setting limits to your work hours. This is especially important during COVID-19 when many of us are working from home.
  • Shut off your computer during your off days, so you won’t have to worry about working during your off days. If you have installed email or communication software on your phone for work, turning off notifications also helps.
  • Turn on ‘Do not disturb’ mode on your phone at night. Give yourself some me-time and use the time to do whatever you like – catching up with TV dramas, reading, listening to music, or sleeping.
  • If you are working from home, separate your workspace from your bedroom or resting area. Environment greatly affects our perception – staying in your workspace helps you to focus on your tasks, heading to your resting area can signal you that your work time is over.
  • Pick up a new hobby. This can help you to steer your mind off from work and temporarily escape from the hustle. It can be learning new instruments, new skills, or exercise.
  • Connect with friends and family. Friends and family can be your support network when you are stressed. Just a text message or a phone call can already make a huge difference. You can also talk about other things to get your mind off work.
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