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8 Types of Work-Life Balance

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Work-life balance is the goal of being satisfied with both your work and your life. The term is associated with a desire to maintain a strong work ethic while still having time for things that improve your quality of life such as sleep, rest, health, exercise, family, friends, hobbies, interests, peak experiences and personal reflection. The following are common approaches to work-life balance.

Working Conditions

Working conditions include the responsibilities, accountabilities, schedule, work hours, commute, hygiene factors, organizational culture, salary, benefits, autonomy, controls and terms associated with your job or business. Some jobs are simply too demanding and inflexible to allow an individual to achieve the type of lifestyle they want. However, it is increasingly common for firms to offer attractive working conditions in order to compete for talent. Labor laws in many jurisdictions may also help to ensure that most people have reasonable demands placed on them by employers.

Objectives

Knowledge workers may have significant leverage in shaping their objectives and role. For example, an IT manager may take on work that makes their team valuable without overcommitting. This requires careful estimates, prioritization and negotiation to agree to a reasonable set of objectives with your stakeholders.

Managing Expectations

Communicating your objectives and what is currently out of scope of your work. Stakeholders may push unreasonable, low value and high risk tasks at you that will disrupt your productivity and work-life balance. Alternatively, stakeholders may simply imagine that you are working on things and then be disappointed when you don't deliver to these unstated expectations. As such, work-life balance often requires an ability to manage expectations for what you will deliver.

Time Management

Viewing time as a precious resource and finding ways to use it productivity or rewardingly.

Productivity

Increasing the amount of value you create in an hour of work with techniques such as automation, process improvement and innovation.

Time Boxing

Setting a time limit for an activity or work day. For example, a lawyer who works diligently for 9 hours each day and then goes home at 6 P.M. each evening as a matter of principle, even if issues are unresolved.

Quality Time

Completely devoting yourself to an activity without distraction. For example, a manager who doesn't accept phone calls or read messages while on a family vacation.

Work-life Integration

The idea that if you are passionate about your job that you may see little distinction between your life and your career. For example, an individual who sees no issue with responding to business messages 24/7 because they find their work interesting. Being constantly available may also free up time as you add value as needed as opposed to during rigid hours.
Overview: Work-Life Balance
Type
Definition
The goal of being satisfied with both your work and your life.
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