Do you live a private life

Work-life balance - when work and life are in harmony

A good work-life balance is an important step on the way to a happy life. What is behind the term and what you can do about it.

What is work life balance: definition

The term Work life balance means Basically, that you are happy with how much time you spend in each Work and private life spend. With an ideal work-life balance, you have enough space for both areas of life: In your job, to be fully committed and focused on what you are doing (work) and to shape the rest of your life as you wish. Work-life balance is a prerequisite for a happy life.

Why is work life balance important?

There is a good balance between work and private life important for mental health. Permanently excessive stress on the job can lead to mental illnesses and sleep problems.

At 8:00 p.m. from the office, have a quick drink with your colleagues, then home and tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. the first meeting is on the plan - beforehand you have to quickly prepare the numbers. Actually, you wanted to call your mother about your workout and again. But then it just has to wait.

Tip: You don't have to have time to exercise? We have put together a wide variety of bodyweight workouts that last a maximum of 30 minutes. Here we go!

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If you are constantly electrified at work, often neglects sport, family and social contacts. Private life falls by the wayside. Everyone knows stressful phases in the job. In many companies they are part of everyday life and that is how it should be. Short-term stress is definitely positive: it increases theCortisol levels, makes you productive and makes it easier to concentrate. It is only important to realize when the work-life balance actually occurs out of balance comes.

There are no general definition for the maximum number of hours you should spend at work or the minimum number of hours you need to have free. According to the Betterlife Index of the OECD, German employees have an average of 15.6 hours off every 24 hours - including sleeping, eating and the like. This puts Germany in 7th place out of 40 countries analyzed.

Work is Life - When the lines blur

The understanding of work is subject to constant change. How you experience workt and whether it is a blessing or a curse depends greatly on that socialization, your individual Value system and Beliefs on the subject of work. The generations also often evaluate the term “work” differently.

While in the 80s and 90s work was primarily seen as a necessary path to financial security, today there are many jobs that require the Self-actualization serve and make personal values ​​heard.

Then they can The boundaries between work and private life are blurring. For example, do you work in a project out of conviction that advocates environmental protection, human or animal rights?

Even then, work is “work”, but with content that is also important to you in “life”. This is how you experience them Work as part of your identity and your private life and like to spend more hours at work without feeling drained.

Especially jobs that come with a high emotional engagement go along, but can also demand a lot from you. To look at the suffering of others all day long or to feel obliged to finish A, B, C, D and E by the end of the week, because otherwise the heart project is endangered, requires a lot Ability to differentiate and tolerance to frustration

Even then, in terms of work-life balance, it is important to you regularly Space for your private life to take and switch off from work.

Life is what you make of it

And not in the sense of performance. The Design of your life area and how much space it should take up compared to the job is up to you. What do you need to have a fulfilling private life? And how much time do you need for that?

What a good work-life balance means is individual and closely related to your value system, yours Understanding of happiness coupled with a fulfilled life.

Honestly ask yourself what you want to achieve in life and which values ​​are important to you. Don't be impressed by the fact that your CMO sits in front of your computer 60 hours a week or that the hippie next door never seems to have to work and still manages to make ends meet. What is it that you want

You can have a 40-hour office job and still have a fulfilling private life with enough hours for everything that is important to you. Or you only work 10 or 20 hours because the things that are important to you outside of your job simply need more space. Consideration, Prioritization and meaningful implementation are up to you.

What about your work-life balance?

Take the opportunity to check how your work-life balance is doing. Sometimes the burden increases without you noticing. Or maybe everything is in perfect balance with you. Ask yourself the following questions and answer them honestly.

  1. How stressed do you feel at work?
  2. Do you feel up to the technical requirements of your job or are you under or overburdened?
  3. Do you have enough time for your social life?
  4. What about quality time just for yourself?
  5. What is the best way to switch off? Do you do this regularly?
  6. What thoughts do you have when you get up in the morning? Are you looking forward to the day or are you already wondering how you can do it all?
  7. How well can you switch off after work and on your days off?
  8. Do you think everything will stand still when you are not working or does your team do these things?
  9. Are you happy with the work you are doing?
  10. Can you put your phone aside for a day without fear of missing out?

Take the time to listen carefully to every single question. Preferably do you write down the answers and lets your thoughts flow. Write down everything you can think of and analyze for yourself whether you need to change anything.

11 work-life balance measures for a better balance

Work-life balance sounds great. For a balanced and content life. How you do this is up to you. With our 11 work-life balance tips do you keep the balance between work and private life.

# 1 Wonder why you work.

Freelance, self-employed or employed in a company: Ask yourself why you do exactly what you do. Do you work for the cause, for your self-fulfillment or just to make money and to be able to afford a great vacation? Everything is legitimate. who Meaning and development potential sees in his job, prefers to work. What this sense looks like is up to you.

# 2 Set priorities.

What is really important to you in life? What makes you happy and where do you feel completely yourself? Who is your favorite person to surround yourself with and why? Do you have time for these things? Or does your job bring you to the point that you will have more time for it in the (near) future?

Put your Priorities accordingly. If career is high on your priority list, that's great. Even so, you should still have space for your most important people and activities in your private life. Plan your (work) week so that you have time to go to exercise, meet your mother, or just do nothing. Or are the after-work beers with colleagues or the 7 p.m. meeting really more important?

Tip: There are very simple strategies to improve your Increase Productivity. Those who are more productive have more time and therefore better chances of achieving a good work-life balance.

# 3 Imagine how beautiful it could be. And do something for it.

How do you imagine that for yourself ideal balance between work and private life in front? Do you maybe already live it? Or are you at a point that is not perfect but already pretty good? Congratulation!

Unless: What change can you maketo get there? Take a look at your job and your free time: Perhaps you can reduce your weekly working hours, make them more efficient or change your professional direction?

What can you adjust in the private area? Would you like to change something on the outside, finally more Workouts make youeat healthier or is it perhaps worth working on your perspectives, beliefs and dealing with stressful situations?

# 4 Optimize your time management.

Spend the time you work as efficient as possible. Plan the evening before what your next working day should look like and prioritize what you really want to achieve. Achieving a daily goal avoids frustration and stress.

Plans realistic and incorporate buffersif something doesn't work out. This way you can see right from the start when something is getting too much and you can get support before everything gets out of balance.

Tip: Learn to concentrate properly. Our 22 tips for more concentration in the workplace help you with it.

# 5 Identify time robbers.

One of most important steps on the way to a better work-life balance. Here, too, you can take a close look at your job and private life: Which meetings in the company can you give yourself? Do you really have to read all the mails in which you are Cc?

How much free time do you spend together with semi-sensible social media consumption? What dates do you keep just to to do someone else a favor? When do you use Message & Co to distract yourself from what you actually want to do?

# 6 Find out what gives you energy.

What are you really good at? Which professional tasks are the most fun and do you prefer? When do you really get into the flow? Try to focus on these things and become an expert in these areas.

The The same goes for leisure: How do you feel really good and relaxed? What gives you an endorphin rush? Give yourself time to do it regularly.

# 7 Stay flexible.

As good as it is to draw a clear line between work and personal life, it is also important to stay flexible. You have nothing more to do at 12 noon, but you know that you will receive feedback from 5 p.m. with which you can continue working? Then take the day off instead of twiddling your thumbs in the office and work in the evening. Do you have a clearer head when you know that you are briefly answering an e-mail after work? Then do it.

Thanks to home office, smartphone & Co. Work more flexible become. To deny and demonize that makes no sense. It's okay that Advantages of spatial and temporal flexibility to use and to answer emails even after work. You have probably already scrolled Instagram in the office (respect, if not).

It is only important that you get your Turn off notifications with a clear conscience and enjoy the off-time.

# 8 Don't just hang out with coworkers.

Team building is super important. Having a good relationship with colleagues makes work twice as much fun. But in the standard 9 to 5 job you see each other 40 hours a week. Use the end of the day to try To gain distance and meet people unrelated to your job.

# 9 Pay attention to your work-life-sleep balance

So far there was only talk of doing, doing, doing. But doing nothing and sleeping is also good. Restful sleep is the basis for productivity at work and relaxation in your free time. Find out, how much sleep you really need to be restedand try to get that too.

# 10 Plan time off firmly.

Do you always tend to work overtime or to stress out your leisure time? Then plan time-outs in a targeted manner: Make an appointment to see when it is over and stick to it. Enter your workouts as fixed slots in your calendar. And keep time spans or days of the week free when you no appointments have - neither privately nor professionally.

# 11 Eat healthy.

A healthy and balanced diet feels good, makes you fit and can be super tasty. A healthy body and a healthy mind go hand in hand. Try our ideas for onehealthy lunch break in the office.

In our recipe database you will find many more recipes that are not only healthy and quick to prepare, but also suit your goals.

Discover recipes


  • Work-life balance stands for a healthy relationship between job and leisure.
  • What a good work-life balance is is individual - it doesn't have to mean a 50/50 distribution.
  • Even in a job that fulfills you, you need time off.
  • Finding out what really gives you energy and fills you with joy is the best prerequisite for creating a good work-life balance for you.
  • Companies can offer framework conditions for a good or bad work-life balance. But you always have leeway.
At foodspring, we only use high-quality sources and scientific studies that support our statements in articles. Read our editorial guidelines to learn how we check facts so that our articles are always correct, reliable and trustworthy.
  • OECD: Work-Life-Balance,



  • Hammy, O; Bauer, G. (2009): Work-life imbalance and mental health among male and female employees in Switzerland, in: International Journal of Public Health, 54 (2), 88 - 95.



  • Wang, J. L. (2006): Perceived work stress, imbalance between work and family / personal lives, and mental disorders, in: Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol, 41(7), 541 – 548.



  • Yang, B .; Wang, Y .; Cui, F. et al. (2018): Association between insomnia and job stress: a meta-analysis, in: Sleep Breath, 22(4), 1221 – 1231.