10 Signs You Don't Have A Good Work-Life Balance & 10 Ways To Fix It

10 Signs You Don't Have A Good Work-Life Balance & 10 Ways To Fix It

Your work-life balance makes all the difference between a healthy life and one overrun with stress. Challenging jobs blind us to how off-kilter that balance actually is, and it can be hard to know how to get back on track. That said, we’re here to break down common signs of burnout and steps you can take to get back your life. 

1. Physical Symptoms

It’s normal to feel a little burned out during a stressful day—what isn’t normal, however, is if you develop physical symptoms in response to your workload. If you deal with eye strain or frequent headaches, it’s your body telling you to slow down. 

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2. Can’t Tune Out

We should be able to unplug at the end of a workday, but a mind stuck on work is a red flag of poor work-life balance. Checking your phone on the weekend or completing tasks outside of office hours is a sign you need to separate yourself. 

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3. Feeling Overwhelmed

It’s common to get frustrated when projects and meetings pile up, especially on top of your everyday workload. That said, constant dread or persistent stress impedes your mental health, and a poor work-life balance doesn’t give you a chance to relax. 

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4. Neglecting Health

Demanding jobs require a lot of time and attention, but they shouldn’t come at the expense of your well-being. Employers who expect that kind of dedication don’t have your best interests at heart.

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5. No Enjoyment

Sure, everyone says they “hate their job,” but it’s a legitimate problem for those who mean it. Draining jobs can easily stop you from enjoying life, leaving you stressed without even your hobbies to comfort you. 

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6. Poor Productivity

On the flip side, excessive hours also lead to poor productivity. It’s hard to stay focused or creative at work when you’re completely burned out, and if the boss comes knocking about performance, that only makes work-life balance unhealthier. 

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7. Overcomitting

Saying "yes" to every project is a good indicator of poor boundaries. It can feel like you have to agree to everything, but taking on an unreasonable workload just skews your priorities—and soon you value work more than your personal well-being. 

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8. Neglecting Hobbies

Hobbies give us a chance to unwind after work and turning your back on them only leads to more stress. As important as self-care is, carving out time for personal interest is just as beneficial, so when work consumes your entire life, you know you’ve got a problem. 

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9. Isolation

Neglecting friendships is a common sign of a poor work-life balance. The last thing a job should do is pull you away from meaningful connections, especially when they’re essential for emotional support. 

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10. Emotional Exhaustion

Persistent stress leads to all kinds of unpleasantness from irritability and mood swings to chronic fatigue and even insomnia. Any job that lives rent-free in your mind has control over your life, and you should aim to break free.

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But how can we do that without quitting or sacrificing our performance? Here are a few methods you can try.  


1. Quality of Quantity

Striving for quality over quantity ensures you deliver a good product. If your boss pushes for more, clearly communicate to them that this is how long completion takes you, and they can either have it done quickly or correctly. 

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2. Set Boundaries

You are the most important thing in your life, so hold onto that mindset during office hours. You’re not pushy for setting boundaries and you’re well within your rights to turn down additional work—in fact, it’s one of the best things you can do.

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3. Prioritize Self-Care

Whether it’s by waking up a little earlier or taking time for yourself at the end of the day, try and get in more you-time. You don’t need to head to the spa every day, but allowing yourself a thorough skincare routine or even just a cup of coffee in the morning does wonders for your psyche. 

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4. Regular Breaks

It’s impossible to work nonstop for eight hours, so make sure you take breaks throughout the day. Regular breaks from your desk give your mind the refresh it needs to come back and kick butt—working through mind fog, however, leaves more room for error. 

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5. Normalize Expectations

Some employers have one philosophy: more more more! But you’re in charge of you and if they won’t regulate expectations, you have to. Communicate with management when they ask for too much. You may experience pushback, but odds are a poor job done in an unreasonable time frame would’ve caused that anyway. 

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6. Seek Support

Remember how we talked about meaningful relationships? Well, they’re more important than ever in times like this. Speak with trusted people about what’s going on, not only to keep them in the loop but also to explain why you may have been distant. No one knows what you don’t tell them and those closest to you will be happy to help or just listen.  

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7. Say No

Some bosses love to drill a yes-man mentality into employees’ heads—but it’s time you stopped the cycle! You’re not obligated to take on every project, you don’t have to answer your phone on the weekend, and you don’t have to cover shifts when you’re busy. You have a life outside of work, even if your boss likes to pretend you don’t. Learn the power of no. 

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8. Communicate

Open discussion with your boss may not go well, but it’s a crucial part of maintaining a good work-life balance. Professionally communicating grievances opens the door to solutions and gives you peace of mind that you did all you could. 

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9. Delegate Tasks

Either speak with management or work with your team to better delegate tasks. Every stitch of work shouldn't fall to you and a good team works together to help each other reach an end goal. 

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10. Time Management

It can be hard to stay organized amid the chaos, but time management is your friend. Prioritize tasks, set realistic timeframes, and break projects into smaller steps. You can also use to-do lists and calendars free up your schedule. 

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