Employees have had to throw out their normal routines and learn how to adapt to the disruption of the pandemic. Amrutha Suresh, Sr. Business Architect at Pandora, highlights the abnormality of the situation: “We are in a setting where work, learning, and family life are happening in the same place—our home.”

Having to juggle the responsibilities of home and work life in a single environment can lead to stress and intense pressure. However, if you can find a sustainable balance between the two, you can still manage to lead a productive and healthy lifestyle.

Suresh recently hosted a meetup for the Women in Business Systems Community, where she discussed how you can navigate your work-life balance throughout the pandemic. Read on to learn what she shared!

Want to watch the full recording of the meetup? You can access it by joining the largest community of business systems professionals, Systematic. You can learn more about the community and join it here.

Acknowledge Your Challenges and Adjust Your Expectations

You’re likely feeling pressure to match your productivity to when you worked in the office—despite taking on additional responsibilities at home. On top of this, you might be dealing with working-mom guilt, where you feel guilty when you’re working and guilty when you aren’t. Though easier said than done, try to lower your expectations and change your goals to reflect what you can achieve. This might help minimize feelings of guilt and it can help reduce the day-to-day pressure you’re feeling.

Lean Into Your Community

In this work-from-home era, we are missing out on our in-person connections.  The “water-cooler” interactions, happy hours, and company gatherings seem like things of the past. 

To help compensate for this void and to avoid burnout, try to maintain a solid social network. This involves setting aside time to connect with your personal network, and making an effort to share your experiences. Bonding over shared challenges and engaging in light conversation can be reenergizing and just what you need to get through this difficult stretch.

Create Physical Boundaries

Physical boundaries can help you differentiate between your work and your personal life.  If possible, try to create a separate space for you to work. This can mimic going to the office and entering a dedicated work environment.  In addition, you can physically put away your work equipment to create a sense of leaving the office and returning home. You’ll likely be able to identify other ways to set boundaries, so take the time to play around with different approaches and see which help.

Let Your Voice be Heard

A report by the Harvard Business Review reveals that stress from the workplace cost the U.S. economy “more than $500 billion dollars, and, each year, 550 million work days are lost due to stress on the job”.  This goes to show that employees need to adopt a sustainable work-life balance in order to preserve their productivity and performance.  

If you’re struggling with your workload, voice your concerns with your manager and create a solution that fits your needs. For example, if you’re experiencing fatigue from constant virtual meetings, ask to take the meeting over the phone without the camera.

Managing a team? You can help your colleagues voice their concerns by organizing standup meetings or by using an enterprise chatbot (that can ask employees how they’re feeling through a business communications platform).

Interested in hearing how BT leaders are managing their work-life balance during the pandemic?  Join the Systematic community to find out!

Mary Hodges
About Mary Hodges

Mary previously worked in IT recruiting and is thrilled to bring her community building skills to the business systems community.