People vary in terms of how they tend to manage their work-life boundaries. Some people prioritise work, others non-work, and some try to do both. People also vary in terms of how separate they like to keep these parts of their lives: ‘integrators’ are happy switching frequently between one and the other, perhaps to the point where there doesn’t seem to be a boundary at all. ‘Separators’ like to keep them completely separate and wouldn’t ever contemplate working at home or at the weekend.
In addition, research exploring the work-life boundary practices of remote workers shows that, despite the general belief that remote work provides freedom and flexibility, the reality is often very different. Remote workers often find it useful to set up routines and boundaries to support their working practices, and crucially, their non-work time, requiring self-discipline and self-control. However, it is important to remember that much of our behaviour is driven by our environment and that the people who are most successful in demonstrating self-control, do so as a result of setting up their environment in such a way as to make it easier to do so. Rather than relying on self-control, they use explicit strategies (temporal, physical and digital boundaries) to provide external sources of control. This requires some work to plan and create but our resources will support you in doing this.
We have identified a number of different ways in which you can improve your work-life balance by creating new boundaries:
If you would like to know more about boundary strategies, click on the links above. We have made some strategies available for free. If you would like to access more content, consider taking part in our research. We will provide you with a self-reflection tool and personalised recommendations that can work for you.