This week is National Work Life week, encouraging both employers and employees to focus on well-being at work and a healthy work-life balance. A career as a carer mainly revolves around ensuring the well-being of others, but this week is dedicated to also looking after ourselves at work, maintaining our health and happiness in the workplace.
What is national work life week?
National Work Life Week was created by Working Families, the UK’s national charity for working parents and carers. They began this annual campaign to increase the conversations around well-being and work and work life balance. Working Families encourage employers to provide activities for staff during the week, and showcase their flexible working policies and practices.
The importance of a healthy work-life balance
A healthy work-life balance can mean different things to us all, however it overall refers to how a person manages both their work and personal life. According to StandOut CV, 31% of UK employees feel that they do not have a good work-life balance, and almost 3 in 10 workers (28%) believe that they are less productive in work due to a poor work-life balance.
This is something that National Work Life Week is dedicated to change. Maintaining a healthy balance improves our physical and mental health, increases our engagement both within and outside of the workplace and increases productivity.
Here are some other ways you can improve your own work life balance:
Take a full lunch break: 82% of Brits do not take a full lunch break, with two thirds of workers eating lunch at their desk most days. Studies have shown that those who take a full lunch break come back to work feeling more refreshed and productive than those who don’t. A break allows you to unwind and recharge your energy.
Prioritise your health: With the business of our daily lives it can be easy to overlook our health and taking care of ourselves. Make sure to eat healthily throughout the day, stay active, take time to relax and always seek help from a healthcare professional when needed.
Make sure you take time off: Annual leave is a necessity. Taking uninterrupted leave is extremely important for our mental health and wellbeing, it allows you to take a break from the stresses and demands of working life.
Take short breaks throughout the day: Taking short breaks where possible can prevent burnout. Take some time to have a snack to increase energy, or a quick drink, such as a cup of tea or coffee, to relax and refresh. This can have more benefits than you may think, click here to read more about the power a cup of tea can have.
Set boundaries: Make sure you set boundaries between your work and personal life. Define specific work hours and separate work related tasks from personal responsibilities.
Take care of your mental health: 55% of employees want to work for a company who will actively support their mental health. This is a percentage that has doubled in the last 10 years. Here at Cera, we provide support via our Mental Health First Aiders. They are available to contact via phone and email whenever you need mental health support.
Achieving a healthy work-life balance is an important aspect of our wellbeing and productivity. Not only is a balanced approach beneficial for us as individuals, but also our employers, employees and colleagues.
Why being a carer offers a great work-life balance
A career in care offers a great work-life balance due to the flexibility of the role. Working hours are usually outside of the traditional 9 to 5, making it a great career for parents and caregivers, individuals that are studying, and even those wanting to come out of retirement.
Two thirds of UK employees (66%) feel that work-life balance is a crucial consideration when applying for a job. Working in care means that you are able to make your career fit around your life, not the other way round. It is reported that UK employees work the longest hours in Europe, with an average of 42 hours per week. A career as a carer means that you are able to choose your own hours, and there are often part-time and full-time roles available.
The care industry offers roles that support every lifestyle. There are many types of care work, such as domiciliary care, clinical care and care for children. Each of these offer different career paths, and also various working patterns. You can find out more about a career in care, the different types of care and the key duties of a care assistant here.
National Work Life Week reminds us of the importance of maintaining a healthy work-life balance. It's a time when employers and employees can focus on well-being in the workplace and strive to create an environment where both personal and professional lives can thrive.
A career in care is an excellent choice for those seeking a happy and flexible work-life balance, whilst also providing many opportunities for advancement and growth.
To read more about career progression in social care, click here. Hear from our very own carer Tony, who began his career as an unpaid carer and now works as a Quality Manager, or read about Val Sayer, 75, who chose to continue working beyond retirement age.
If you’re thinking about a career change into care, you can view our available vacancies nearest to you here.