We all have long and stressful workdays during the week, but what makes our working life even worse is technology. You’d think that technology makes everything easier, quicker and better, right? Well, as it turns out this is not always the case.
When you finally get home after a hard day at work, and your phone starts ringing, and your inbox starts flooding with “urgent emails” what do you do? Do you ignore it, answer straight away or wait a couple of hours before you reply?
Well, as a recent study by the American Psychological Association found out, more than 50% of workers check their work emails before and after work hours, when they are sick and throughout the weekend. Even more amazingly 44% of employees check their work email while on holiday!
But this shouldn’t be happening; we must always set up boundaries between our professional and personal lives or else our health, work and personal life will suffer. Most importantly, you need to think about what things belong to you and only you and what really belong to your boss,
Here is a list of things you don’t and should never owe your boss.
1. Your Family
It is easy to make our families suffer from work; you are working to support your family after all. Even though you have good intentions, this can harm your family due to the lack of quality time they get to spend with you. When you grow old, you’ll remember the memories created with your family and not how many iPhones or iPads you bought your kids.
2. Your Health
Sometimes it’s difficult to know when and how to set boundaries around your health because the decline in your health is happening gradually. If you don’t sleep well, sit around all day without exercising and are getting stressed all the time your health will eventually deteriorate. To do that you need to keep a steady routine; try to set goals that will help you keep fit and healthy such as not working during the weekends, taking a short walk during lunch, take vacation days and etc. This way you won’t let work overstep your boundaries.
3. Your Identity
Of course, work is part of who you are, but you should be careful and not allow your job to become your entire identity. Having an identity outside of work helps you to actually enjoy yourself, grow as a person, relieve stress levels and avoid exhaustion.
4. Your Sanity
You don’t owe a slice of your sanity to your employer. Your job shouldn’t even take a small portion of your sanity; you have to keep an eye on it and set good boundaries to stay sane. Usually, our time outside of work is what keeps us sane (family, friends, hobbies). When you know you worked really hard that week, and your boss keeps asking for more, the best thing would be to kindly say no and go on to enjoy your activities. This way, you will return to work feeling refreshed and ready to embark on a new and highly productive week.
5. Your Integrity
Everyone’s integrity is vital in having a stress-free work life, and if this integrity is sacrificed, it will only lead to greater anxiety levels. If your beliefs and actions at work no longer stand side by side, it is time to think of your actions again. Talk to your boss and let them know how you won’t be able to do things their way anymore and if they disagree, then it might be time to part ways.
If you want to be successful, then you need to set clear, strong boundaries between your personal and professional life. You’ll see that as soon as you do this everything will just fall into place.
Do you have any tips on how to set boundaries at work? Let us know in the comments section below.