Sunday World

Take a break to find your work-life balance

A few tips to ensure that you do not fall victim to burnout

- By Bongani Mdakane

You would have heard of the mantra “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”. This talks to the need to have a solid work-life balance strategy.

Lauren Leyman, an occupation­al therapist at Netcare Akeso, said since the start of the pandemic it was vital to reassess how you manage demands in your daily routines as this could make a significan­t difference to both quality of life and quality of work.

“We have a fixed amount of energy to use each day and based on how we distribute this energy between the main mechanisms of our lives, which include work, family and leisure time influences our work-life balance,” Leyman said.

“If we put too much energy into work, too little energy into rest, family and leisure time, we may be on the road to burnout. Many workers are reluctant to take time off, feeling that there is never a good time to be absent from their role at work, however, people should think of a break as an investment in their own well-being and a proven way to improve their productivi­ty.”

Leyman offers the following tips to avoid burnout:

• It is important to try turning the notificati­ons off on your work emails outside working hours and it is wise to also invest in a separate phone or laptop for your home life;

• Taking a short mental health break will help to keep you more productive throughout the day. Set boundaries for yourself in how you manage your time, and define a cut-off point for work because there will always be priorities no matter how much extra time you put in;

• It is also crucial to focus on yourself as a person rather than worrying about outstandin­g tasks, hence it is important to set boundaries with your line managers and colleagues;

• It is vital to inform bosses and colleagues that your personal life is also crucial, therefore you cannot be available for any work-related commitment­s when you are in your personal space focusing on your personal life.

• Meanwhile, news emerged this week that the Helen Joseph Hospital in Gauteng recorded a steep increase in mental health patients seeking help at the facility.

The department of health in the province attributed this to the poor socio-economic circumstan­ces aggravated by the pandemic.

 ?? / Pexels Photos ?? Taking a short mental health break is recommende­d to increase productivi­ty.
/ Pexels Photos Taking a short mental health break is recommende­d to increase productivi­ty.

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