8 Ways Women Can Maintain the Work-Life Balance During COVID-19
To say that the past few months have been a whirlwind would be an understatement. Life has turned upside down for most people as they are compelled to maintain social distancing. Embracing the new normal is the only choice. While everyone is trying to cope with this crisis, this has been particularly difficult for women. Even the UN recognizes the socio-economic impact during COVID-19 on women. One of the many issues that women are grappling with amidst this quarantine is managing their work-life balance during COVID-19. Now, anyone who has been working from home these past few months would tell you that it’s never quite as fun as it seems.
So, for women, work-life balance during COVID-19 is a herculean task. However, this problem can be resolved with a few strategies.
1. Having a routine will be helpful
Following a routine may seem boring, but ultimately we’re all creatures of habit. Any activity outside of what’s normal in your day-to-day lives is bound to throw you off-balance and hinder productivity.
Adapting to remote working, only leaving the house for all but necessities, staying two meters away from people outside our household – is tricky, no doubt. So, consider all the habits and rituals you usually perform throughout the day. You’ll see that most of them can be fitted into a schedule.
2. Draw boundaries for professional and personal life
Your routines and plans will just go for a toss if you don’t set boundaries. For many women who don’t usually work from home, it can be daunting to maintain productivity when you have your family around. You need to let them know that your work demands your attention, and you will devote time when your work is done.
In fact, you can convey the same to your superiors and co-workers that you’d like to spend time with your family after a specific time. This helps you to keep your personal and professional time separate and reduces unnecessary stress.
3. Create an office set up at home
While working from home, you’re probably tempted to sit on your bed or the comfortable bean bag or the couch. But here’s advice for you – don’t do it! The more comfortable you get, the more unwilling you will become to work. This will not only hamper your productivity but also ruin your mindset to work from home.
That’s why it’s best to have an office set up at home. You can either go to a separate room to work or set up a table and chair in your bedroom itself. This will make sure you’re in the right frame of mind while working. Also, keep your workspace organized.
To complete your home office setup, you need a powerful desktop computer that can keep up with your busy schedule. Laptops are great, but desktops offer more functionality and connectivity when your work involves a lot of multitasking. Plus, you can’t work on your bed or your couch with a desktop, so that helps you stay in work mode for the rest of your shift.
The larger display, thanks to a bigger monitor, also lets you work comfortably without having to minimize your screen to see the full content of an Excel sheet or a page. Finally, a desktop features more ports, allowing you to use multiple peripheral devices simultaneously without having to disconnect one.
4. Stay in touch with your co-workers
You can get caught up at work and forget that a world exists outside of your home office.
If you’re not accustomed to working remotely, make a conscious effort to stay in touch with your colleagues or team members and your superiors. Schedule video conference calls with other colleagues from time-to-time. You can use tools like Slack or Zoom. This way, you can discuss not only projects and milestones but also talk and get some social interaction.
5. Take breaks in between your work
Nobody can or should work continuously. Breaks are a necessity, particularly in a stressful time like this. So, make sure to include a few tiny break slots in between when you plan your work schedule.
For instance, if you work for eight hours a day, take a ten-minute break after every hour. In these planned breaks, you could maybe take a quick stroll around your terrace, play with your pet or your children, or enjoy a quick snack or a smoothie.
“Short breaks will help you keep the monotony of work creeping in while also allowing your brain and body to de-stress,” opines Joe Mirren, an academic expert for Myassignmenthelp.com.
6. Go for a social (media) detox
We all are guilty of sneaking a little peek into our social media feeds in between work. And with lockdown, this practice seems to have amplified, considering that’s the only way to stay in touch with the world outside. But as a result of this, we unknowingly become burdened with the pressures of maintaining a social presence, which breeds negativity. Seriously, you don’t need another Instagram bingo or #passthewhatever challenge.
Hence, it’s alright to take a hiatus from all social media channels for a while. This will make you aware of the amount of wasted time and allow you to spare plenty of time to indulge in other pleasures.
7. Devote adequate time to your family
Having your family around amidst this massive humanitarian crisis is a blessing. So, you must keep them close and spend time with them. You can even plan activities to do together as a family. Listed below are some ways you can sprinkle in some fun while adding a bit of variety to your quarantine days.
Involve your children in dinner preparation. Let them choose recipes and measure out different ingredients.
- Have a friendly competition like a karaoke night or family dance-off.
- Make mealtime fun; dine by candlelight or have a picnic in the yard.
- Go on a hike early in the woods or walk around your house (as long as other people aren’t in the vicinity, because well, social distancing).
- Host a virtual tea party for your extended family members living in different parts of the world.
- Create an obstacle course inside or outside the home for your pets.
- Create a fort with blankets and cushions. Children can even work on their assignments in these fun sanctuaries.
8. Make self-care a priority
Being compelled to stay inside the house is bound to take its toll on your mind and body in some way. But remember, your mind and body needs the fuel to help you sail through your professional and personal life. So, taking care of it is extremely vital.
You can practice some form of workout. There are so many fitness applications (some of which are offering free subscriptions), and there are YouTube videos as well that you can check out.
Also, you’d have to be a saint if you don’t crave junk food while living a quarantine life. Having said that, it’s best to avoid all since what we eat creates an impact on our health, mind.
Adapting to the new normal is never easy, and it’s completely fine to feel overwhelmed with the responsibilities. In this case, trying to maintain a balance helps a lot. Remember that as long as you’re feeling healthy and positive, you can keep your loved ones healthy too. Using these tips you will be able to manage your work-life balance during COVID-19.
Ava Smith is a psychologist who has close to eight years of experience in her chosen field. Ava has earned her Ph.D. in psychology from Federation University in Australia. She loves writing and blogging in her free time. She’s also serving as an assignment help expert for Essayassignmenthelp.com.au. She assists students in asking for my assignment help. Apart from work, she also likes cooking and doing yoga.