The seven challenge areas for work-life balance
Work-life balance was first mentioned in the UK at the end of the 1970s, in the US it was first used in 1986. Since those days, a lot has happened in the professional and the personal world. Listed below are the seven most challenging areas, which could apply either to work or life situations. Compare those with your own situation and find out which are your main challenges. Every challenge adds to pressure, pressure leads to stress, stress leads to emotional and physical unbalance and unhappiness.
1. Unrealistic demands
The demands that work and life throw at us can easily mount up to incredible levels. Unreasonable demands at work, arrangements that are eating into personal time, such as weekend meetings, and technology overload are mentioned as adding a lot of pressure. Demands of personal life are adding pressure to work, as time is required to accommodate family or friends, and are eating into work-time. Think of family members with intensive schedules, impacting on yours (the mum that needs to ferry the athlete to extra training sessions or matches, or the partner that decides to do an evening course), or when expectations are set by others (like a monthly visit to parents). Meeting too many demands is a threat for the healthy balance.
2. Lack of control
Lack of control is creating pressure, as it leaves you ‘hanging in there, with a dark cloud above your head’. It is difficult to deal with uncontrollable workload, or the insecurity of the situation of the company you work in. In personal circumstances aspects as illness, exams, kids issues can feel as if all control is gone and is very stressful.
3. Unsupportive relationships
Unsupportive relationships at work, aversive behaviour or not getting credits, are creating a difficult and unproductive work environment, making people feel isolated. Unsupportive relationships at home, where no one helps each other or considers other people’s pressures creates frustration and unhappiness.
4. Lack of resources
Not enough resources or not the right ones are really affecting how life can be organised. The absence of a PA or a good babysitter are both examples of important lacks.
5. Unhelpful attitude
Resilience in challenging circumstances determines how well someone is coping and finding a way forward. If the energy levels are low and undermined, due to all the different challenges, it can be really hard to find that resilience.
6. No skills
Surviving and managing the challenges above and the personal awareness and behaviour that goes with it, are professional and life skills. No skills? Lots of stress.
7. High stress levels
All the above challenges can appear in anybody’s life and will add to stress levels. Not being able to handle stress will kill any chance of a healthy work-life balance.
Not all of the above challenges will appear in someone’s life at the same time, but if a few challenges present themselves at the same time, it will be very difficult to create a healthy work-life balance. Awareness of the challenges is the first step to overcome them.
Another step that you can take right now, is to download and read the ebook on ‘How to create 30 minutes of quality ME-time each day and drive the stress away’. Email firstname.lastname@example.org and it will be send to your inbox.
About the author
Dr Mariette Jansen (Dr De-Stress) is a psychological coach, using therapy models, coaching techniques and mindfulness meditation to help you become balanced, stress free and in control of your life.
Focus areas are work-life balance, confidence, food/diet stress and general stress.
Author of two books: on meditation and exam stress.
Life Coach Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.
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