Flexible Work: The Link between Mental Health and Work-Life Balance

by Jacqueline Klaus
25 June 2021
Focusing on the mental health of employees has become increasingly important in the workplace. Employers are starting to realize there is an undeniable link between Work-life balance and mental health. Flexible work is one incredible way to positively impact the work-life balance of working mothers - here's why!

Work-life balance is defined as the state of the well-being of an individual that a person can effectively manage multiple priorities and responsibilities at work and at home. Recently, we wrote a blog post on, Flexible Work, Who Benefits? where we discovered that there are many benefits for both the employer and employee. We believe that flexible work is one way to help employees achieve a better balance in the workplace – here is why.

Benefits of Healthy Employees and Flexible Work

Healthy employees means better productivity, higher job performance and increased overall job satisfaction. FlexJobs completed a survey with 3,900 respondents that explored the link between mental health and work-life balance; 86% believed it would decrease their levels of stress.

Work-life balance is one of the top reasons why people seek flexible work. 54% of respondents with flexible work options said their work-life balance was either great or very good, compared to only 29% of respondents without flexible work options who reported the same thing.

In fact, most individuals agree that working from home has been productive for their overall health and wellness and report feeling that continuing to have options for flexible hours and location would improve their mental health.

Current State of Mental Health in the Workplace 

The current state of mental health in the workplace is nearing a breaking point. According to Maven and A Great Place to Work’s largest study of working parents, over 2.4 million American women are currently suffering from burnout. Additionally, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CMHA), reported in a Workplace Mental Health Review and Recommendation, that mental illness is a leading cause of disability in Canada. Every week at least 500,000 Canadians miss work due to mental illness and the resulting personal, workplace and economic impacts can be devastating.  

Flexible work can help ease the pressure of those who may be experiencing challenges with mental health by allowing them to skip the burden of coming into a workplace and take a break whenever needed. This can help employees manage their mental health and also increase employee productivity and satisfaction. 

We believe that mothers and caregivers should be able to fulfill their career goals while finding their ideal work-life balance. At The Working Mom Initiative, we advocate for improved flexibility in workplaces and for better working conditions for working mothers. 

Adapting to Flexible Work

As we start to see the desire for more employees to want to continue flexible work as we ease out of the COVID-19 Pandemic, it is important to keep flexible work options open for discussion. Mental health has taken the forefront of concerns from our employees, and rightfully so. The past year and a half has proven that nothing is as certain as change and in uncertain times, there isn’t anything as valuable as providing a healthy workplace leading to better mental health and ultimately higher employee satisfaction. 

Ready to make the leap to flexible work? Let us help! Connect with us today and we will help you create flexible workplaces.