25+ Work-Life Balance Statistics & Trends: The Modern Day Job Reality

February 5, 2024 0 Comments

Does work-life balance truly exist?

Get this: 52% now work over 45 hours a week and 38% face crazy pressure from unrealistic deadlines.

No wonder over half feel burned out and overwhelmed trying to get it all done.

With so many putting in super long hours and unable to unplug, finding balance feels impossible for most.

But it doesn’t have to be this way!

Let’s dig into the data to find tips so we can all thrive at work without losing our minds or lives outside the office!

76% of women and 65% of men value work-life balance

Top Work-Life Balance Statistics: Editor’s Pick

  1. 16% of workers hardly use vacation days to actually relax. [1]
  2. Over half of employees now work at least 45 hours each week. [2]
  3. According to Limeade, 38% work under intense pressure from tight turnarounds. [3]
  4. 50% of GenZ vs 77% of Baby Boomers are happy with their work-life balance. [5]
  5. 61% say work-life balance is the #1 priority (2,000+ workers). [6]

The Truth About the “New” Work-Life Balance

All Work, No Life

61% struggle to ever completely unplug from work

Work-life balance has taken a huge hit for a lot of people after COVID.

And setting boundaries got way harder with remote work.

In fact, a whopping 61% can’t unplug from their jobs, whether they have a hard time taking time off or work and home are blurred.

Here’s how work invades people’s personal time:

  • 39% are glued to their emails during off-hours
  • 70% constantly check pings and alerts after hours
  • 16% hardly use vacation days to actually relax [1]

The Overworking Epidemic

Remember the 9-5, 40-hour workweek? It’s no longer a reality for most.

In fact, 52% report now working well over 40 hours as the new normal.

Just how many extra hours are being put in?

how many hours are employees clocking these days
  • 52% now work at least 45 hours each week. 
  • 39% average over 50 hours a week.
  • 18% put in a staggering 60+ hours every week. [2]

The Overwhelmed Majority

more than 52% say they constantly feel burned out and overworked

All those lost evenings and weekends add up. No wonder over 52% of employees report feeling chronically overwhelmed and burned out.

Top causes of burnout include:

  • Heavy workloads – 21% are overwhelmed managing their many responsibilities. [3]
  • Unrealistic deadlines – 38% work under intense pressure from tight turnarounds.  
  • Long hours – 37% feel exhausted from overworking.
  • No downtime – 16% go long stretches without any breaks for renewal. [1]

The new remote working situation has definitely changed things up. But that doesn’t mean a healthy work-life balance is impossible!

In fact, we dug up some interesting data showing it’s still possible to find that balance, even now.

Now let’s check out how work-life balance plays out across different industries.

Work-Life Balance Across Industries

Want the full scoop on work-life balance across industries?

According to Remote, there are key factors like pay, remote jobs availability, and so on – to uncover which ones offer the best equilibrium.

See the full breakdown of which industries rated highest for balanced lifestyles below. 

The rankings may surprise you!

Top 10 Industries that offer a healthy work-life balance

IndustryAvg. salary% of remote jobsLife/Work Balance (out of 5)Avg. hours worked (inc. overtime)
Finance and Insurance£62,2448.21%3.6737.4
Mining and Quarrying£43,0665.96%3.4439.9
Architecture and Engineering£34,90311.37%3.8640.9
Information and Communication£47,5566.10%3.7240.4
Real Estate£33,3554.87%3.6939.8
Legal and Accounting£31,5045.96%3.7037.6
Health and Social Work£26,7015.32%3.7139
Other Service Activities£24,54710.25%3.6438

How Different Generations Feel About Work-Life Balance

how different generations view work-life balance

Overall, older folks are more happy with their work-life balance.

Check it:

  • 50% of GenZ vs 77% of Baby Boomers are happy with their work-life balance.
  • And 61% of Millennials vs 63% of GenX are satisfied with their current setup.


  • 25% of Gen Zers are unhappy with their balance. 
  • Millennials and GenX share the same sentiment (20%).
  • And only 12% of Baby Boomers aren’t satisfied with their work and personal life. [5]

So basically, the younger you are, the tougher it is to achieve balance. Gen Z struggles the most, while Boomers have it pretty dialed.  

Experience and seniority seem to make it easier to maintain boundaries and find fulfillment. But younger workers are getting burned out quickly.

Advantages of Maintaining a Healthy Work-Life Balance

Why is work-life balance so important?

Well, here’s the scoop: 21% of folks rocking a good balance actually work harder.

Plus, companies with a sweet equilibrium enjoy 50% lower healthcare costs

Some facts:

  • 21% with good balance work harder 
  • 50% lower healthcare costs for balanced companies
  • 89% of HR professionals saw better retention with flexibility 
  • And 33% of workers plan to stay if they have work-life balance
  • Some companies reported 25% lower turnover with balance
  • 24% more happy/productive with work-life balance 
  • 85% say work-life balance boosts productivity
  • Balance gives more time with family (46%), partners (42%), and pets (37%) [9]

Disadvantages of Poor Work-Life Balance

Crazy work hours and poor work-life balance are killing people’s mental health, relationships, and cranking up the stress.

Over 48% of workers feel this pain. 

The stats speak volumes:

  • Working 55+ hours spikes anxiety and depression 
  • Almost 50% say balance issues harm family 
  • 35.7% report work-life struggles increase stress
  • 67% blame work culture for poor balance  
  • Unscheduled days off cost companies $2,600-$3,600 per employee yearly
  • High stress = 50% higher healthcare costs
  • 65% say job stress causes personal problems
  • 10% report major personal issues due to job stress [9]

Workers Insights

importance of work-life balance according to employees

Employees today often choose fulfillment over higher pay. Flexibility and remote options are in demand to achieve better work-life integration.

Here are some facts:

  • 61% say work-life balance is the #1 priority (2,000+ workers) [6]
  • 83% would take less pay for better balance [7]
  • And 56% won’t sacrifice balance for any raise
  • 36% prioritize personal life over career
  • 87% say remote work improved work-life balance [8]
  • 24% of Gen Zs want flexible hours
  • 71% make work-life balance an important job search factor
  • 76% of women vs. 65% of men value work-life balance


What are some signs your work-life balance is unhealthy?

Signs of poor work-life balance include:

  • feeling constantly stressed
  • irritable or emotionally drained
  • neglecting your personal needs
  • missing important events and time with loved ones
  • not taking vacations
  • relying on substances to unwind

If you’re currently experiencing any of these signs, then it’s probably time for you to take a breather and restore some balance once in a while.

How can I set healthy boundaries with work as a busy professional?

Be clear on your availability by setting core work hours. Block off time for family and self-care. Don’t check emails outside work hours. Set an out-of-office if taking time off. Leave work at work physically and mentally. Say no to non-essential assignments.

What are some simple daily habits that can improve work-life balance?

Here are some pro-tips to improve your life outside work:

  • Get enough sleep
  • Take breaks during the workday
  • Turn off electronics after hours
  • Maintain a healthy diet
  • Make time for hobbies and relationships
  • Exercise regularly
  • And practice mindful breathing and meditation

Can my manager prevent me from taking time off for my personal life?

No, it is your legal right to take a meal and rest breaks. You are also entitled to use accrued paid time off, sick days, and FMLA leave when eligible. Communicate needs clearly and know your rights.

How can I talk to my employer about needing better work-life balance?

Have an open discussion about challenges you are experiencing and specific ways they can help that don’t jeopardize operations. Suggest telecommuting options, flex hours, job sharing, restructuring roles, outsourcing work, or providing additional staff to cover duties.

Wrap Up

So the bottom line is…we all deserve to work hard and still have a life.

So speak up about what you need and set those boundaries!

Together we can shift broken work cultures so our whole selves – not just employees – can thrive.

And pro tip: don’t forget to breathe, turn off the laptop, go offline, and recharge however works for you. Your mind, body and loved ones will thank you!


  1. Indeed. Employee Burnout Report: COVID-19’s Impact and 3 Strategies to Curb It
  2. Time. America Gave Up on Overtime—and It’s Costing Workers $35,451 a Year
  3. Limeade. Employee burnout statistics for 2023
  4. Remote. Out of office hours: Which industries offer the best life-work balance?
  5. CommercialCafe. Work and Life Balance Survey Highlights Younger Generations’ Workplace Woes
  6. Oyster. The Employee Expectations Report 2022
  7. The Muse. Most Workers Say No Amount of Money Would Make Them Sacrifice Work-Life Balance
  8. Clockify. Work-Life Balance: Statistics & Facts
  9. Gitnux. Must-Know Work Life Balance Statistics [Current Data]