Work and relationships balance

How to Balance Relationship and Work: 7 Tips To Try

How to Balance Relationship and Work: 7 Tips To Try
  • Conditions
    • Featured
      • Addictions
      • Anxiety Disorder
      • ADHD
      • Bipolar Disorder
      • Depression
      • PTSD
      • Schizophrenia
    • Articles
      • Adjustment Disorder
      • Agoraphobia
      • Borderline Personality Disorder
      • Childhood ADHD
      • Dissociative Identity Disorder
      • Narcissistic Personality Disorder
      • Narcolepsy
      • Oppositional Defiant Disorder
      • Panic Attack
      • Postpartum Depression
      • Schizoaffective Disorder
      • Seasonal Affective Disorder
      • Sex Addiction
      • Specific Phobias
      • Teenage Depression
      • Trauma
  • Discover
    • Wellness Topics
      • Black Mental Health
      • Grief
      • Emotional Health
      • Sex & Relationships
      • Trauma
      • Understanding Therapy
      • Workplace Mental Health
    • Original Series
      • My Life with OCD
      • Caregivers Chronicles
      • Empathy at Work
      • Sex, Love & All of the Above
      • Parent Central
      • Mindful Moment
    • News & Events
      • Mental Health News
      • COVID-19
      • Live Town Hall: Mental Health in Focus
    • Podcasts
      • Inside Mental Health
      • Inside Schizophrenia
      • Inside Bipolar
  • Quizzes
    • Conditions
      • ADHD Symptoms Quiz
      • Anxiety Symptoms Quiz
      • Autism Quiz: Family & Friends
      • Autism Symptoms Quiz
      • Bipolar Disorder Quiz
      • Borderline Personality Test
      • Childhood ADHD Quiz
      • Depression Symptoms Quiz
      • Eating Disorder Quiz
      • Narcissim Symptoms Test
      • OCD Symptoms Quiz
      • Psychopathy Test
      • PTSD Symptoms Quiz
      • Schizophrenia Quiz
    • Lifestyle
      • Attachment Style Quiz
      • Career Test
      • Do I Need Therapy Quiz?
      • Domestic Violence Screening Quiz
      • Emotional Type Quiz
      • Loneliness Quiz
      • Parenting Style Quiz
      • Personality Test
      • Relationship Quiz
      • Stress Test
      • What's Your Sleep Like?
  • Resources
    • Treatment & Support
      • Find Support
      • Suicide Prevention
      • Drugs & Medications
      • Find a Therapist

Medically reviewed by Jennifer Litner, PhD, LMFT, CST — By Sonya Matejko — Updated on Aug 9, 2022

Managing your work life and your love life is a balancing act — but there are several helpful hacks.

With your packed schedule and running to-do list, it’s natural if you feel challenged by balancing doing your best work and being the best partner. On particularly stressful days, it may even feel impossible.

But here’s the truth: Managing a job you love and keeping the love strong in your relationship is possible.

You might just have to work at it.

To help you find more stability, you might try to:

1. Have emotional check-ins

When work is hectic, life tends to go by more quickly. Consider taking a step back to do an emotional check-in with your partner. How are they feeling? Do they feel seen or supported by you? Discuss what you both could do to feel more connected.

2. Slide into their DMs

Sometimes it feels nice to know your partner is thinking of you. If you have a free second at work, maybe you send your partner a text message, a funny reel, or an article you read that reminded you of them. Have a really busy day? Let them know you’ll be away from your phone.

3. Establish a date night

Dedicating one night a week (or month) that both you and your partner know is your date night can help you organize your other needs on the other days of the week. It also gives you both something to look forward to no matter how busy your schedule gets.

Here are Healthline’s 30+ At-Home Date Night Ideas to Keep Your Relationship Fresh.

4. Practice active listening

If your time is limited, making your time with your partner count is essential. The best way to do that is to practice active listening.

While it may be tempting to check your phone, try to be present with your partner. Avoid phubbing (aka snubbing someone with your phone) as a 2020 study found that, in married couples, phubbing could negatively affect spouses’ mental health.

5. Set healthy boundaries

Finding a healthy balance between love and work requires healthy boundaries.

You can communicate with your partner about the boundaries you need, like an extra hour of sleep or staying late for a meeting, without feeling guilty. You can also set boundaries together, like no phones at dinner or in bed.

6. Dream together

André Shinabarger and Jeff Shinabarger, the authors of “Love or Work: Is It Possible to Change the World, Stay in Love, and Raise a Healthy Family?” suggest creating a bucket list with your partner.

Creating this list of dreams and goals can help you feel like you’re working toward something together and give you things to look forward to.

7. Ask for help

If you’re stretched too thin, ask yourself if there’s anything your partner can help with. Maybe it’s groceries or laundry. If you’re worried about being a burden, consider this: Your partner would likely much rather be asked to help than feel helpless when you’re stressed.

8. Love

Above all else, don’t forget to practice loving your partner. Showing love could be as simple as a genuine compliment or as grand as taking a day off to reconnect. You can tell them that you love them. You might try making space for intimacy and trying to ensure they feel seen.

If you work opposite hours from your partner, it may take getting a little more creative such as leaving little love “Easter eggs” like a note in their lunch. Know that it’s possible to boost your bond even if your work schedules conflict.

You’re likely busy, so let’s cut to the chase. Yes, your workload can indeed affect your love life. According to a 2017 study, higher workloads relate to lower marital satisfaction, and there are long-term consequences of higher workloads on family life.

Another study on workplace stress found that 18% of people in North America aren’t just stressed about work, they’re stressed about balancing work with their personal lives. Plus, when work takes over, it becomes more difficult to create emotional safety and can, in turn, negatively impact your relationship.

You’re not alone if you’re seeking a better balance between your work life and your love life — and you have options.

Before you take your next step, consider balancing on your own two feet, closing your eyes, and taking a deep breath to get grounded. Try to gently remind yourself that you can do what you love and be with who you love — with a bit of balance.

Of course, couple’s counseling is also an option if you ever want additional support. Feel free to use PsychCentral’s Find a Therapist tool if and when needed.

Last medically reviewed on August 2, 2022

4 sourcescollapsed

  • Lavner J, et al. (2017). Workload and marital satisfaction over time: Testing lagged spillover and crossover effects during the newlywed years.
  • Mir RZ, et al. (2020). Phubbing behavior and romantic relationship: Mechanism of mental health among married couples.
  • Shinabarger A, et al. (2018). Love or Work: Is It Possible to Change the World, Stay in Love, and Raise a Healthy Family? Grand Rapids, Michagan: Zondervan.
  • Workplace Stress.


Medically reviewed by Jennifer Litner, PhD, LMFT, CST — By Sonya Matejko — Updated on Aug 9, 2022

Read this next

  • Shift Work and Relationships

    Medically reviewed by Jennifer Litner, LMFT, CST

    If you and your partner are working opposite schedules, you may be wondering how you can stay close and nurture your relationship while working…


  • 7 Tips for Setting Work Boundaries for Yourself and with Others

    Medically reviewed by Vara Saripalli, PsyD

    When there are blurred lines with coworkers, or where your workday ends and your personal life resumes, we're here to help (re)balance work/life…


  • Become a Better Listener: Active Listening

    Medically reviewed by Vara Saripalli, PsyD

    If you've been told "You don't understand what I'm saying" or "You're not listening to me," you can bookmark our pointers for how to be a better…


  • 9 Health Benefits of Friendship

    Medically reviewed by Debra Rose Wilson, PhD, MSN, RN, IBCLC, AHN-BC, CHT

    The benefits of friendship are widespread and can improve all areas of your life, such as reducing symptoms of stress and providing a reliable support…


  • How Many Friends Do You Need?

    Medically reviewed by Danielle Wade, LCSW

    Some people need more social time than others. That said, research says most people in America have between 3 and 5 close friends.


  • 7 Signs Someone Doesn't Respect Your Boundaries and What to Do

    Unhealthy boundaries in relationships may hurt your mental health. Here are the signs of broken boundaries and how to put a stop to it.


  • How to Respond to a Passive-Aggressive Person

    Here are some of the characteristics of a passive-aggressive person, what triggers their behavior, and how to respond to them.


  • Power Struggles in Relationships: Causes, Signs, and How to Resolve

    Is every relationship a power struggle? Yes and no. Here's all about power balance and how to avoid and solve common challenges.


  • The 4 S's of Secure Attachment and How They Impact Adult Relationships

    These 4 S's may determine how a child can grow up to form secure attachments and healthy relationships.


  • 5 Early Signs of Divorce and How to Resolve Before It's Over

    Here are some signs your marriage may be over or heading for divorce. Good news is you can work on overcoming these challenges before it's too late.


How to balance relationship and work? Follow these 5 tips

Listen to this article

It’s natural to feel challenged by balancing your professional life and being the best partner with your packed schedule and running a to-do list. It may even feel impossible on particularly stressful days. If you’re also wondering how to balance relationships and work, you are at the right place.

Health Shots spoke to Devina Kaur, a motivational speaker, radio host, and producer, who listed some important ways to manage a mismatched work-life balance in a relationship, especially when it is causing issues with your partner.

1. Talk it out

One of your first actions should be to sit down and have an open, sincere, and honest conversation with yourself and your partner. Self-reflection will ensure that you are on the same page with others. Behavior that seems perfectly reasonable to one of you might be causing unneeded stress, anxiety, or resentment for the other. You both need to keep in mind that, no matter how close you are, your partner cannot read your mind. Unless you communicate with them, they might not realize there is a problem.

Communicate what you feel. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

2. Set healthy boundaries

It takes healthy boundaries to strike a balance between work and personal life. Without feeling guilty, you can talk to your partner about the boundaries you require, such as an additional hour of sleep or staying out late for a meeting. Together, you can establish boundaries, such as no cell phones during dinner or in bed.

You can establish what works for you both by establishing boundaries together through discussions. Return to these boundaries on a regular basis to see if they are working as intended or if there is a better way to try things in the future.

Also read: 7 tips every new dating couple can use for a healthy love story

3. Talk about your common goals

Each of us is motivated by very different things. Some people find fulfillment outside of their jobs, while others are career-driven. Although there is no right or wrong way to be, it can be beneficial in the long run to gain a clear understanding of what motivates each of you. It’s okay if your core values differ from those of your partners.

4. Check if your partner is doing okay

When work is busy, time passes more swiftly. Take a step back and check in with your partner emotionally. What mood are they in? Do they feel supported by you or seen by you? Talk about how you two can feel more connected.

Solve relationship issues amicably. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

5. Love

Count on love most of all. Make an effort to love your partner. Giving them small praise or going on vacation with the intention of spending time together can both be small but meaningful ways to express your love. Ensure people feel seen by telling them you adore them.

The importance of work-life balance

What is work-life balance?

Work from 9 to 17 is gradually losing relevance. Past generations may have considered work the most important thing in life, but today we have a better understanding of the relationship between work and health. There is a growing awareness of the place given to a person's personal life realization. The concept of “work-life balance” (sometimes also abbreviated as WLB⁠) speaks for itself: it is a sense of harmony between career and family life, the absence of conflict between them. For example, if you have to work overtime, you may have a work-family conflict in which you cannot perform your duties equally well at work and at home. This means that there is no balance between your work and personal life.

Typically, when people talk about achieving work-life balance, they are talking about a work schedule that doesn't require them to sacrifice their personal time for longer working hours. Creating this balance is often seen as critical to employee well-being and a superior company culture.

Why is the balance between life and work so important?

Everyone wants to have more time to do what they love. Striving for an optimal work-life balance can sometimes seem like just self-deception. In fact, everything is not so simple. Achieving work-life balance is extremely important for the mental and even physical health of office workers and freelancers alike. The lack of such balance can lead to the so-called "burnout". The World Health Organization defines it as follows:

“… a syndrome recognized as the result of chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully overcome… a feeling of mental or physical exhaustion; increased mental detachment from work or feelings of negativism or cynicism associated with work; decrease in professional efficiency.

Burnout is becoming more and more common, causing employees to lose motivation and efficiency. It also leads to heart disease, high blood pressure and various types of diabetes. Simply put, being in a state of constant stress is bad for both employees and the business.

Work balance tips

Achieving a healthy work-life balance depends both on personal attitudes and actions in the right direction. Here are some tips to help you make sure that you and your team are on the path to harmonizing your life:

Know the importance of balance

You will be surprised to learn that a good work-life balance is what people want most. A recent study found that employees are willing to receive lower wages in a company that treats them more humanely. Putting personal circumstances aside is a pretty big concession. However, this is a clear indication that people no longer see work as the most important thing in their lives—only as a means to secure a certain standard of living. What does this mean for you and your team? Your colleagues need to know that you care about their interests and well-being both in the office and at home.

Stop calling it balance

In the issue of work-life conflict, the idea of ​​seeing balance not as a delicate balance but in terms of life as a whole is gaining popularity. For example, don't assume that sending a few work emails on the weekend will automatically revoke your weekend's "free time" status. Similarly, don't assume that taking a break during the workday means you're not working.

Manage time and energy

A working day is not just the number of hours you spend at your desk. Try approaching your work in a new way, perhaps by creating a to-do list or using a time-management technique like the pomodoro. If you are a manager or manager, give your team the opportunity to try different ways of working and managing tasks. Our productivity naturally fluctuates throughout the day, waxing or waning periodically, so don't expect your co-workers to consistently deliver high levels of productivity. Knowing this will relieve you of unnecessary stress, and you will be ready to make the most of your off-hours. We recommend that you try Dropbox Capture as a great way to make this happen.

Dropbox Capture is a tool for capturing videos and screenshots to present ideas. Team members can confidently use it to record and then share the link with colleagues to view the file in their spare time.

Plan and manage your expectations

Planning your workweek will help you determine the time you can truly devote to your personal life. For example, if you plan to go all out every week, you may be prone to failure, disappointment, and burnout. Set more realistic expectations for yourself to evenly distribute your energy between work and personal life.

Schedule a day off as early as possible, even if you think you don't need it . Do it ahead of time, not right before a vacation or holiday. Choose an arbitrary recurring date, such as the second Tuesday of every month for six months. This way, you and your team will remember that you have an assigned time to recharge.

If you manage a team, don't expect the impossible from your team members. Try to approach the project knowing that things can go wrong and make allowances for it. Even the Navy's PERT planning methodology recognizes that things don't always go smoothly.

Be mindful of your surroundings

Whether you work from home or in the office, you need to be aware of your surroundings. It is unlikely that you will have much influence on the design of your office, but try to keep your workplace clean and tidy⁠. The old adage "A clean desk, a clean mind" makes sense. Similarly, when you return home, make sure you are in a place that allows you to relax and reduce your stress levels. Don't think about work papers, don't open work emails on your phone. If you work from home as a freelancer, try to limit your office space to a room or desk that you can move away from at the end of the day.

Don't underestimate mental health

This applies to both your work group and you. More and more companies are realizing the importance of mental health days, which means employees can choose to take time off to recharge. Physical illness does not have to be the only reason for rest. Be candid with your team when discussing the importance of mental well-being, don't feel embarrassed or embarrassed that you don't feel your best all the time⁠—no one does. While this attitude doesn't solve the problem, it can certainly help with psychological relaxation. 55% of employees worry about asking for leave to deal with a mental health issue. By openly and honestly discussing mental health issues and not hiding your true feelings, you can help your work team reduce stress levels and, very likely, the impact of these problems on the lives of your employees.

Don't go it alone

Many companies today see their teams as more than just names or numbers⁠—like one big family. Colleagues are invited to joint corporate events after work, and team chats on Slack or Zoom have long been the norm. Essentially, colleagues are encouraged to view each other as friends, people they can connect with and rely on. These companionships can go a long way towards maintaining work-life balance.⁠ Isolation has been found to negatively impact the motivation of those who have started working from home without the support of other remote workers.

However, distance can't stop your team from staying connected, especially today with so many effective remote collaboration tools at your disposal. Just make sure everyone knows and has access to all the collaboration tools they need to create an easy-to-use single collaboration space.

This may also be different from how you keep in touch with your family. With a Dropbox Family plan, you can get updates about images, videos, and other shared family content that you want to share.


A good work-life balance is based on the opportunity to engage in personal and family life. This does not mean that you should not give due importance to your professional life, but you should remember that work and life outside of it are equally important. Your colleagues are not just people you see with a laptop for eight hours a day. These are people who have hundreds of important obligations outside of work. When all of you internalize this way of thinking, you will find that you can actually achieve a quality work-life balance.

How to finally find work-life balance

Liana Khaziakhmetova

Balance is his search. Perhaps such a definition will be closest to the truth, because the path to harmony is endless. Soon to work, and the struggle between work and personal life will flare up inside with renewed vigor. We hope our tips will help you be efficient and happy at the same time.

In the book Rules of Life and Business, Igor Mann shares his vision of balance and tells what principles he adheres to when trying to combine the incompatible.

Learning to say no is the easiest way to find balance

Rules of life and business

There are lies, damned lies, and there is the phrase "I have a great balance between work and family. "

The "family-work" ratio can be balanced by the process, but not by the result (I know, the phrase turned out to be complicated - but try to get to the bottom of it).

A careerist in life cannot become a family man.

A family man will not become a careerist in life. I respect an employee who, in the "family-work" formula, chooses a family, but I know for sure: he will not make a good career.

Imbalance is guaranteed here. You start working more - the family is cracking. You start arranging family life - business is booming.

We must try so that the crack does not turn into a fracture.

For women and those who work remotely, it is much more difficult to find a balance between family and work. And now try to imagine the difficulties that a woman working from a home office experiences ...

Everyone has their own golden mean of the “family-work” balance.

I love to be interested in the secrets of the work-family balance of successful people. What you can't hear...

When people say: "I have a wonderful balance between work and family..." - I hear: "I wish I had a balance between family and work..."

How to balance relationships with family? Agree with half. Apologize. Compensate with gifts (yes, read: “pay off”, “make amends”). Spend more time with your soul mate, children, do not forget your parents. Weekends - for the family to the maximum.

How do you spend the New Year holidays? Source

Can't take the amount of time? Focus on quality (it will take money).

How to balance relationships with work? Work as efficiently as possible to meet the minimum processing hours. Not taking work home ("ha ha ha" for knowledge workers). Don't think about working at home. Spend quality time with your family. Sounds simple. It turns out rarely.

The easiest way to balance your family and work is to learn to say no. Remarkable skill.

You choose: more work or more family. Over the course of your life, many people and factors will influence this decision - but the choice is yours.

I'm sure family should be a priority. Losing a job is a disaster. Losing a family — a wife/husband, children… — is a tragedy.

A Ritual to Separate Work and Life

Peter Bregman, author of Emotional Courage, believes that true self-confidence comes in part from maintaining work-life balance. Unfortunately, because of the desire to cross off as many items from the to-do list as possible, many are constantly blown into the familiar ocean of tasks. Our weaknesses grow on unlimited access to the work stream. It's an old story: we thought that technology - laptops, smartphones, email - would help us break out of the office, but it turned out the other way around. Now the office cannot tear itself away from us. We have lost our borders. Previously, the space was physically divided: leaving the office, you left the work outside the door. Now there are no such boundaries. We need new frontiers.

“I realized that I needed a ritual that would symbolize the separation of work and everything else,” writes Peter. - A way to save myself even in a situation of emergency and become who I want to be.

To mark the beginning of the working day, I light a candle and say a short prayer in which I ask for guidance and strength to do the right thing. At the end, I light the candle again and, remembering the past day, say a prayer of thanksgiving.

Anything can be a ritual. Source

I don't start the countdown until the kids leave for school, and after it's over, I don't touch work until I light a candle the next morning. If you sent me an email after I said the prayer of thanksgiving, I will only receive it after I say the prayer the next morning.”

If you'd like to try this too, Peter advises you to follow the ritual with religious seriousness, although it doesn't have to be religious. It could be a phrase you say to yourself, a song you listen to, a time when you write in your personal diary, a meditation, a sign on a piece of paper, an object you move to another place. In a word, anything that marks the separation of work from everything else for you.

After the final ritual, you really shouldn't go back to her. Let your computer and phone lie on the sidelines while you do your personal work. This approach has an important advantage: when you go to work the next morning, you feel energized, your performance increases, because you know that at some point you will have to stop working. And you get creative by incorporating ideas you have drawn from other areas.

The system of blocks

A properly drawn up schedule will help you achieve balance. For example, you can break a weekday into four blocks. Each block consists of three "useful" hours and an hour of conditional idleness. Two blocks for work tasks, one for personal development, one for relationships.

Of course, such a routine is unlikely to be followed every weekday. However, the overall structure helps to maintain a balance between career, personal development, and the formation of strong relationships.

You can read more about the block system in the book Just Space, but for now, schedule your ideal week. Include all regular activities in it. Example from the book:

• I do Pilates on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 20:00 to 21:00;

• on Mondays from 10:00 am to 10:30 am I plan working meetings with the team;

• I call my parents on Saturdays at 20:00.

Don't forget to include time for rest and "useless" activities in your schedule. Schedule half an hour of doing nothing on Facebook, Instagram, watching TV shows. So it will be much easier to stick to a “productive diet” and not “break loose” on social networks during the working day.

Schedule everything, even social media. Source

Completion of this task will take no more than 15-20 minutes, but it will help set the boundaries between work and leisure, lay the foundation of a structure on the basis of which it will be easier to decide what and when to do. In addition, research shows that feeling in control of your schedule is the number one factor in avoiding burnout. Try it!

Integration instead of balance

Productivity consultant Nin James doesn't believe in balancing professional and private life. Many try to achieve mythical balance, but it's like chasing a unicorn that doesn't exist. Work and personal matters cannot be put on the scales and wait until both bowls freeze on the same line. In Focus on What Matters Most, Ning offers a different approach—integration.

Focus on the essentials

What's the difference? Integration assumes that the environment, emotional mood and expectations depend only on you. And your goal here is to create the right conditions and routine. For example, on Fridays you work from home, devoting this time to completing strategically important projects.

Integration also means power over one's own emotional state. In the office, one should not be tormented by guilt before the family, and at home one should not be tormented by remorse about work. This burden is borne by many leaders.

Learn more