What Does Work-Life Balance Mean for You?

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Striking a balance between work and free time helps us build a happy, healthy life. We read and hear about the concept “work-life balance” touted as a goal, but what does this actually look like when we apply it to our own lives?

A healthy work-life balance can look different for each person, according to Tim Ollhoff, a regional director with LSS Behavioral Health. 

Some people might prefer a rigid boundary between their free time and work — they like to be fully “off” when they clock out for the day. 

“Some people go to work as a means for them to acquire a paycheck and connection with people,” Tim said. “Their vocation may not provide them a significant sense of meaning. They may feel robbed if they don’t have time for their book clubs, sports or spending time with friends and family.”

For other people, the sense of purpose and achievement they gain from their work might lead them to prioritize their job.

“Their work is who they are,” Tim said.

What Does Balance Mean to Me?

Because a healthy balance in life varies so much from person to person there’s no “wrong” way to balance your work with free time.

To examine whether yours is working for you, Tim recommends asking yourself the following questions:

Am I sleeping well?

We function better when we are well-rested and present in the moment. Are you able to fall asleep at night without spending too much time ruminating about obligations at work? Do you feel like you have adequate time to get enough sleep?

Am I maintaining connections with other people?

Feeling connected to our friends, family and community fulfills an important emotional need in our lives. Do you have adequate time for the people who mean the most to you?

Do I have time for things I enjoy?

Our jobs are often a significant aspect of our lives. Even when your job is fulfilling, it is still important to have time for things that we enjoy outside of work that fulfill us and bring us joy.

Finding Your Balance

As humans, we bring our whole selves to work. It’s not possible to never think of our personal lives at work or think about work at home. In order to create a work-life balance that’s best for you, it is important for you to experience work time without longing for free time. Likewise, it is equally important to enjoy your free time without worrying or being preoccupied about work. 

If you’re struggling to find balance between your work and personal life, counselors with LSS Behavioral Health can help you examine your life and build a plan to establish the right balance for you. 

Call LSS Behavioral Health at 1.888.881.8261 to make an appointment or learn more about our services on our Behavioral Health webpage.

Supporting Your Employees

For employers and managers, the overall well-being of each member of your team can benefit the rest of the team. If you’re interested in offering support to employees, NuVantage can help.

A service by Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota, NuVantage is an employee assistance program that promotes workplace wellness, enhances employee performance and improves employee retention and engagement.

NuVantage offers employees services including behavioral health counseling, eldercare consultation, financial counseling, legal consultation and wellness information. Learn more about offering NuVantage at your company or organization by visiting the NuVantage Webpage or calling 800.577.4727.