Work-life balance – how to reach it?  

Author

Anna Makieła-Zoń
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We know perfectly well how to combine responsibilities with rest and spending time with loved ones. So that everyone knows where the line between private and professional life is. However, each of us takes care of this differently.   

Today we introduce you to Kasia, who serves as Project Manager at SOFTIQ. Kasia told us how she understands work-life balance and how she deals with combining her professional and personal responsibilities.   

Softiq: Do you keep the mentioned work-life balance?   

Kasia: Some time ago I introduced a “friday is free work” rule in my schedule. Of course, it’s not that I close my laptop, turn off my phone and I’m not there for anyone. I just organize the day differently. For a long time, I’ve been trying to make sure that I balance my work time with my private time. Without a doubt, I can lose myself in my professional duties, forgetting everything else. But I have learned how to get out of it and take care of myself. The most important thing is to take care of this balance all the time and stand up for your principles, even if a flurry of work and responsibilities temporarily does not allow you to do so.  

S: Will you tell us your secret methods?   

K: An example would be the so-called looser Fridays. I have made it a rule not to schedule regular or recurring meetings with clients. I also limited the number of tasks to be done on Friday. It turned out to be crucial to plan this day simply differently and allocate it to what I call creative work, personal development, summing up the week and other pleasant but still strongly work-related aspects that I often don’t have space for during the whole week.   

Over time, this began to affect my realization that in a while there would be that coveted “Friday, Friday”, I changed my approach to work, increasing my motivation. An example is my posts on LinkedIn, which I very often write on Fridays. That’s when I have the space to do it.    

S: And how do you manage to balance the mass of responsibilities with family, private time? 

K: Another step to success was to introduce afternoon time with my daughter on Fridays. Surprisingly, this has worked very favorably for both spheres – private and business. This is my greatest success!  

My daughter is now an adult and has her own life. I treat our meetings as time spent with my best friend. We fund all sorts of activities: cinema, a restaurant, a walk, watching a TV series together, sometimes a trip. If you are so motivated, you will defend the friday is free work method at all costs.  

S: Aren’t you afraid that this method will one day no longer be enough for you?   

K: Over time I’ve come to the conclusion that it would be nice to go further and always have Fridays free, but this also needs to be done slowly. I’m working on it. ( laughs)  

S: Are there Fridays that this Friday is not really Friday? What do you do then?  

K: Yes, there are periods because of the kind of work I do, that it’s not always possible to work Friday like the Friday, but it makes me realize that we need to change the organization of tasks at work in such a way that Friday is again a time for development, initiatives, new challenges. Such scheduled fixed time for other duties is like a habit and is hard to get rid of later, and if you lose it even for a while, you will do everything to get it back.  

And, by the way, by the fact that on Fridays I think a lot while doing creative work, it is additionally a great preparation for entering the weekend with new ideas – how to spend it with family or friends. People often ask me: how do I do it, every weekend I spend so actively. I answer: I plan this very thing on Friday.   

S: In that case, we wish you good luck. Thanks for the interview.   

K: Thank you! Remember the method of small steps not only at work, but also in life – it really gives a lot, and my motto: “sometimes great victories are built on many previous defeats”.  

Everyone wants to maintain a work-life balance. For some it will be strictly defined working hours, breaks or a suitable place or office where they always perform their work duties. For Kasi, this means a Friday dedicated to development rather than “classic” daily work.   

Did you know that only 22% of Poles are satisfied with their work-life balance, of which only 16% say their employer respects their division of duties and free time? Without a proper work-life balance, as many as 1/3 of those surveyed admitted that they had to take time off due to poor mental health caused by stress. With each passing year, the division between work and rest strives for balance. Britons say their balance is now 55% work and 45% private life, while in Germany it is respectively: 58% i 42%.  

During a typical week, the average Pole finds 5 hours 58 minutes of free time for themselves. Employees from Germany declare the least – 5 hours 46 minutes, while Britons declare the most – 6 hours 37 minutes. For more than half of Poles, free time is very important, and 42% regret not having more of it.1 With this and many other studies showing the seriousness of the situation, we congratulate all the more those who strive to maintain a proper work-life balance. It really does make you live and work better – the research speaks for itself.   

Kasia shared with us her ways to maintain work-life balance – now it’s your turn.  

This post is also available in: Polski (Polish)