Establishing Work-life Boundaries

Tips for Remote Workers

This resource outlines the importance of adopting boundaries between work and life priorities. Additionally, it provides strategies workers can use to create boundaries, especially when work and life are in the same space.

Two-thirds of full-time employees in the U.S. say they do not have work-life balance, and this negatively affects their morale and motivation at work. Lack of work-life balance can lead to feelings of burnout and have real consequences for physical and mental health. A healthy integration of work and life involves establishing boundaries—especially when work and family life are in the same space.

What are work-life boundaries? Boundaries allow us to carve out time for our priorities. They also prevent us from spending too much time on any one priority so as not to take time away from other priorities.

4 strategies for creating work-life boundaries when working remotely:

  1. Create physical boundaries. Make a workspace that is separate and reserved for work. This also alerts your family that you are in “work mode” and not to be bothered. Make the space inviting to help tell your brain when it’s time to focus.
  2. Set and keep work hours. Create a schedule and stick to it. Start with a morning routine that does not revolve around work, and set an end time for your typical work day. Turn off your work tech or leave it in another room during non-work times so as not to disrupt your personal/family time.
  3. Pencil yourself in. Making specific personal plans for after work can make it more likely that you will stop working at the end of the workday. If a family event is going to take place during your typical work hours, be sure it is clear on your calendar both for you and coworkers.
  4. Advocate for yourself. Reflect on your priorities and make sure you share them with your loved ones and your supervisor. This can help your family respect your designated work time and your work respect your designated personal/family time.

Be intentional about creating boundaries. The more perceived control you have over where, how, and when to work and manage other responsibilities, the easier it is to fit the pieces of your life together and feel balanced.

About the Authoring Team

This resource was developed based on content from a presentation by WRMA staffers Asia Downer and Tasha Owen’s Green. 

WRMA’s Learning and Resource Center (LRC) provided graphic design and 508 remediation for the resource. The LRC works with subject matter experts to make content and messaging come alive for audiences through print and digital content and innovative learning solutions.