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Creating Work-Life Balance a Young Professional

In a full-time position working 40 hours a week, the average worker is only productive for 11 hours and 15 minutes, according to VoucherCloud. That comes out to less than three hours per day. Yet, work commitments and expectations haven’t changed, and neither have the commitments and expectations for our home lives. So, from the very beginning, the average worker has been set up with an unbalanced life from the moment they enter the workforce.

Finding a balance between work and personal time can be a struggle for many workers for this very reason, whether they’re seasoned or new. Although many may not believe young professionals experience this struggle because Millenials and Gen Z are known for asking for what they want, that’s not necessarily the case, especially for those newly entering the workforce and trying to grow their careers.

Here are some strategies you may find helpful in balancing both areas of your life if you’re a new young professional – or a seasoned one!


Starting a new job is exciting, but it is important not to overwork yourself to prove that you belong there. You have already made it clear in your interview and hiring process that you are the one for the job! When thinking about the word “work,” you may feel that you have a deep desire to work and fulfill every task as soon as you receive them. That’s not always possible. Some tasks may have to be pushed back to the next day or even a week from the assignment. Learning how to prioritize and create realistic expectations for completing tasks will make your work less stressful and easier to tackle.


How many to-do lists do you accumulate in a day? A running list can easily cause stress and not allow your mind time to relax because you are aware of all the unchecked boxes on your list. Having time and having capacity are two different things. Learning how to differentiate between the two can prevent you from overextending yourself. Sometimes you will have to say no to avoid overcommitting yourself and create a better balance.


Although some people may think it’s easier to balance their home life, many find balancing their work life harder since it’s their source of income. It’s easier to find excuses to get things done on personal time since work provides for you and your family. This means doing “quick” tasks to not feel behind or to catch up on work that you overcommitted to, such as reading and answering e-mails on the weekend or on vacation, texting clients and coworkers, and working after hours for a bit – all for the sake of completing tasks that probably don’t need to be done with such urgency.

All of these “quick” work actions begin to throw off your scale of work and home balance. Things you should do at work should generally be left at work, while home is a safe space for you to return to and enjoy your daily life.

I respect my time away from work by not thinking about work once I exit the building. I enjoy spending time with my parents, fur baby, friends, and alone, working on projects. Finding a hobby that excites you generally will motivate you to find balance. That could be trying new recipes, watching a new television series, sewing, arts and crafts, DIY projects, or meditating/exercising.

Setting boundaries can also help you respect your time away from work. This can look different for everyone, but some examples include being home by a certain time, spending time with family on weekend mornings, having a set corner or space for work (for work-from-home jobs), or giving yourself a well-deserved break. A breach in these boundaries can cause a person to burn out, experience a lack of motivation to work, become stressed, have unhappiness in their career, and jeopardize other aspects of life – and who wants that?

Written by Korzell Coe

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