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The erratic schedules of our lives are a normal story that almost every household has. And now when women are working and even handling their homes, it becomes more necessary for them to have a work life balance. However, there is another side to the coin which clearly shows that even men need work life balance.
Men are generally considered devoted to their work first and family later. But the truth is far from that. Even men have certain responsibilities towards their families and their work cannot take all of their time. Mental health is important for all of us and if a man is just 24/7 thinking and stressing about his work, sooner or later it will catch up with him in the form of different anxieties or mental pressure.
Over work can lead to certain health consequences in a man’s life. Not only can it lead to stress for a man, but can also be the main cause of anxiety in some men. While men are considered the main breadwinners of a family, too much work can stress them out and even lead to a burnout in a man.
According to a research, lead by researcher Kristen Shockley from the University of Georgia, US, found that men prefer not to discuss their work-family concerns because of fears of being stigmatised, threats to their masculinity or negative career repercussions.
However, we have always seen our fathers complaining about being much more stressed than mothers as they hold themselves to a higher standard for involvement in home life than their own fathers did. Due to their demanding career and family life, many men feel crunched in between.
Apart from that, men are increasingly becoming caregivers for their young children and fathers have now been spending more time caring for their children as well as completing household chores.
Benefits of Work Life Balance
Work life balance can certainly help men a lot, especially in their family lives. However, it is not the only reason why men need work life balance in their life. There are many more benefits of work life balance in a man’s life.
Firstly, with the right work life balance men will be able to save themselves from stress as well as a burnout. Along with that, they can be saved from mental health disorders such as anxiety and depression.
While men are working full time, many of their female partners take the responsibility of the household chores on their shoulders, even if they are working full time as well. This either leads to them being overwhelmed due to handling a lot or cutting back on their work hours to handle the household chores.
While it has been stereotyped that mothers play a larger role in a child’s life, the role of a father is equally important and essential. If a man is able to find the right work life balance, he will be able to spend quality time with his children and will be there for them at the right time, such as dinner time, birthday parties, Christmas Eve and more. This will also lead to a better relationship with their partner and a better marriage.
Whether he lives in a nuclear family or a joint family, he will be able to give time to his loved ones, rather than spending nights at the office. They will be having much more meaningful conversations rather than just asking each other how their day was.
Whether you have kids or not, it is quite essential for you to spend some quality time with your partner. Once you have found work life balance, you can easily spend some good, quality time with your special someone by going on a romantic date at a nice restaurant or going to the movies together. It is important that you spend some quality time together as it will make your relationship or marriage stronger.
Finding the right work life balance also means that you will have more time for self care. Whether you want to indulge in your favourite hobby, such as gardening or want to exercise after a whole day of work, you will be able to do so. Apart from that, you will also be able to go for social gatherings as well as grooming activities, like getting that haircut you had been waiting for so long.
Challenging the Norm
If you feel trapped in the endless cycle of working too much and have burnt out, you certainly need to break the chain and find that work life balance which you were supposed to much earlier. Being stressed out at home due to the work pressure is not going to lead you anywhere. A lot of offices are open to discussions and you could talk about flexible timings as well. You won’t go anywhere without trying.
Firstly, you need to accept what you have been going through and that it is tough. If you want you can even vent about it to your partner or a friend. Bottling up your feelings like a soldier can lead to more stress and even lead to mental health disorders such as anxiety and depression. Talking about how it is to juggle life and work is normal and healthy.
The truth is that you need to know when your work and life is getting unbalanced. If you no longer have time to bond with your family or to go bowling with your friends, there is certainly something wrong.
After the pandemic, a lot of organisations have converted to work from home mode and are still on it. You could ask for the same in order to get that work life balance and to give your family and yourself more time. Apart from that, you could even ask for a hybrid mode of work, where you get to go to your office only a few days a week.
You must ask for a proper timing of your work after which no work calls or emails are made so that you remain stress free and spend the rest of the time doing whatever you feel like.
Apart from that, communication is also an effective way of dealing with work life balance. You can talk to your partner about what is not going well in your life, rather than keeping it bottled up inside.
Tips for Work Life Balance
Juggling work and life can be hard for men, with so many responsibilities on their shoulders. We have a few tips for men who have been dealing with this problem.
If you are a father, take paternity leave to spend time with your kids. Whether you work for 8 hours or 12 hours a day, your children need you as well and spending quality time with them will be the best choice you make.
However, if you are not a father, you can always take an annual leave and go for a vacation, with your partner and let all that work stress go away.
Believe it or not, you need a mentor in life in order to focus on anything, whether it is spiritual, financial or related to health. So, in order to have a work life balance, make sure that you have a mentor in all of these verticals, so that you can reach out to them whenever you are struggling.
It is highly important that you include your family in your work life, rather than not letting them know what you exactly do. In this way, you will be able to communicate much more with them and they will have a good idea about your work life as well.
Whether you are a journalist or have a desk job, it is essential that you have a proper schedule maintained in your life so that you are able to stick to your commitments on a daily basis instead of running late for a meeting you had forgotten about.
As a man, it must be hard for you to find that work life balance that you have been aiming for. With so many responsibilities at work as well as by your family, you must be feeling pressured by everything, often feeling like running away from everything. However, that is one option that a man can never go for.
Work life balance is very important for any man, whether he is a corporate lawyer or a construction worker as any man needs to breathe in life. Life is not made for a man just to work but also to engage in different activities such as bonding with his family, playing sports, indulging in his hobbies and a lot more.
Many men end up receiving work calls even after their work hours which creates a lot of work stress and keeps them engaged at home as well. This barrier of work needs to be broken as men need the right work life balance as well for a positive mindset which will help them become much more productive and will help them lead a healthy lifestyle as well.
Work needs to be a part of your life, not the only thing that you do. This is a difference that many men need to understand.