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Maintaining a healthy work-life balance

By Sophia Qin

Apr. 7, 2022

Kailey Hu Art

With countless pages of school work piling up and many after-school events that need to be attended, it can be hard for students to keep up with their everyday schedule.

In the 1970’s, the term work-life balance was introduced as individuals strived to achieve balance between career, family and other aspects of their life. Having a healthy work-life balance may be different for each person. Ioana Lupu and Mayra Ruiz-Castro from the Harvard Business Review explain how work-life balance is a cycle that one must continuously engage in as priorities and circumstances change, demonstrating how the habits of an unbalanced lifestyle are eliminated over time.

Mental Health America highlights the reality for high school students: Completing school assignments on top of managing outside activities can leave students overwhelmed. Therefore, aiming for a work-life balance can be crucial to sustain good mental health. Raising Children, a website certified by Health On the Net Foundation, claims that adolescence is a time of significant growth of the teenage brain. Thus, the mindset that students nurture in high school may carry onto their adulthood.

On top of the numerous time-consuming activities, several students also take a demanding course load at school, which can be detrimental to their mental well-being. According to John Hopkins University, students who put an excessive amount of time into school and lead an unbalanced lifestyle face stress and anxiety. Suniya Luthar, professor of psychology at Arizona State University, states that for some students, their sense of self-worth is solely dependent on their achievements. Luthar further highlights how a competitive environment ultimately makes it harder for kids to achieve a healthy balance.

High school students can utilize various daily tasks such as homework, studying and extracurricular activities to build habits that support a healthy work-life balance.

For one, developing organized habits can reduce possible mistakes, missed deadlines and stress. John Hopkins University suggests students to set schedules and alarms to stay organized. Establishing goals and deadlines for projects and breaking large tasks into smaller components is also advised. Besides keeping organized, only signing up for extra activities that match one’s capabilities can reduce the risk of being burnt out or stressed.

“Due to water polo, I try to get most of my work done during school hours. Being able to practice discipline and not procrastinate has helped me significantly with a good work-life balance. Since I complete my work first, I usually have a lot of leftover time to pursue activities I enjoy,” Freshman Luke Raimondi said.

Time away from ongoing learning material can also help students restore energy to sustain their work-life balance. Nicholas Maldonado from Arthur Morgan School shares that free time provides space for students to think about how to make better choices and retain new information. Although many view free time as a waste of time and tend not to prioritize it, a study published by Annals of Behavioral Medicine showcases how leisure time can provide immediate stress-relief and other health benefits.

Amidst increasing commitments both in and outside of school, attaining a good work-life balance is becoming a more prevalent goal among high schoolers for leading a sustainable and productive lifestyle in the long run.


About the Contributors

Sophia Qin

Staff Writer

Sophia Qin is a freshman at Leland High School and a staff writer for The Charger Account. During her free time, she loves dancing, baking, reading, hanging out with friends and family, and drawing.

Kailey Hu


Kailey Hu is a junior at Leland High school and an artist for The Charger account. Some of her hobbies consist of drawing birds, reading novels, watching Youtube/Twitch, and eating good food.

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