Free Essay Exploring Job Stress and the Work-Life Balance of Working Women with Families

Published: 2022-03-22
Free Essay Exploring Job Stress and the Work-Life Balance of Working Women with Families
Type of paper:  Literature review
Categories:  Women Family Stress Literature review
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1830 words
16 min read

The concept of work-life balance entails the appropriate prioritization of tasks between life and work. It necessitates the achievement of harmony between personal life and professional work. The issues concerning work-life balance were first conceived in the United Kingdom in the 1960s and 1970s. There was also the consideration of the issue by the United States government in the mid-1980s. In the human resource management context, work-life balance was considered as a real issue in 1990. Job satisfaction is an integral constituent of life satisfaction and can only be attained through achievement of stability in the employee's work and family life. In the earlier times, women stayed at home, and those who got employment worked in farms and factories. Only a selected few were able to access higher education. The vast development in the world economies has led to the emergence of opportunities of enlightening women with education. In addition to empowering women, education has endowed women with capabilities for career development. Despite these, women are still challenged due to having to perform tasks at home and in the workplace. As career women get married, there are added responsibilities. As they become mothers, they are children's primary care managers and for the extended families. This means there are at increased pressure to maintain their career paths. The following literature review seeks to explore the job stress and work-life balances on working women with families.

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Literature Review

Anuradha and Pandey (2016) describe work-life balance to entail considerable prioritization of tasks between the work life and private life. When male doctors are working for long hours or in meetings, their homes and children are cared for by their spouses. The same cannot be said for female doctors as they have to deal with pressures from work and family. This means that female doctors try to strike a balance between personal and work responsibilities and these means they have to deal with difficult situations. The authors conducted a study to establish the degree of work-life balance for women doctors and job satisfaction in the Indian setting. The study includes a sample of women employed by the Private Hospitals of Jharkhand. There was the application of questions to collect data, and convenience sampling method was utilized. It was established that there existed substantial differences in work-life balance for different age groups of the respondents. As women start working as doctors, they encounter increased home responsibilities such as cooking, washing and child care among others. They are also required to care for the patients. The result is increased responsibilities. However, as women doctors grow older, there is a reduction in responsibilities towards the family. This means as the age increase there is the achievement of a balance between work and family. By this time, they have already developed coping strategies to deal with conflicts. The study shows that the development of coping strategies has positive implications on the work-life balance. The conclusion was that coping strategies developed by women doctors were essential in dealing with potential conflicts, and the result was the achievement of a balance between the personal life and work.

Rendon (2016) points out that work-life balance has emerged as a pressing issue especially due to the increased number of career women who have families. The author conducted a study to understand better work-life balance among women who are married and working. There was the exploration a population of women playing the role of mothers and also as working professionals. The information that was collected from these women was critical in understanding the complex lifestyle which has been on the rise. There was also the determination of issues and effects experienced by women as they try to strike harmony between work tasks and personal responsibilities. Additionally, the study purposed the establishment of strategies utilized by women in managing internal and external stressors since there is added pressures both emotionally and physically as they become mothers. When the working mothers were probed on barriers and challenges that prevent achievement of a balance between work and private life, they outlined time constraints, work schedule, and exhaustion as the main factors. The named challenges are the main factors from which stress for the respondents emanates. In dealing with the stresses, women used family and non-family members. They mentioned relying mostly on close members of the family for emotional, personal and family support. Women stated that for more personal issues, they relied on the family to take on some work and family responsibilities with the help of their spouses being essential. The non-family members were utilized in the more professional aspects such as professional support and career advice.

Julka and Mathur (2017) conducted research that probed the concept of work-life balance as experienced by women pursuing their careers. The authors expounded that the management of the concept has been pointed out as a pressing matter since the tensions that emanate from it may result to a reduction in performance, increase the fluctuation rate and affect overall job satisfaction. The aim of the study was the assessment of the popularity of the work-life among women in the working class. The study also sought to evaluate issues faced by married women as they try to harmonize their work responsibilities and family life. Additionally, there was the exploration of the impacts on quality of life led due to the issue of balancing work and life roles. The study identifies that stress at work, stress from aging parents and raising children are some issues experienced by working married women. Women are presented with multiple roles which are engrained with demands. This means they become stressed and this may result in increased health problems, work absenteeism and reduced capability to do more. There exist situations that lead to stress for women, and they include unreasonable work demands, problems balancing work and home demands, prolonged working hours and inferior treatment in the workplace among others. In the situation small children are involved, women usually leave them in daycare or with maids. This results in added tensions and reduces their concentration at work.

Singh (2016) explains that there have been changes in gender representation in the workplaces. In India, there has been a history of women holding venerable positions in the society due to traditions and customs. Traditionally, the roles of women have been restricted to household chores and other domestic matters. However, there have been massive changes that have led provision of extensive employment opportunities for the educated youths and especially women. In this study, the author sought to establish the problems faced by women working in the banking sector in India. The study shows that women had found it a challenge to balances their employment status and family responsibilities. They usually face various work-related issues such as harassment and unfair treatment. The author uncovered that the majority of married working women had been employed in the private sector. Some of the issues that have been experienced as they try to balance between their work and family issues include time management issues, control of the work schedule, work overload and unfavorable working hours among others. Despite facing all these issues, the women mentioned that their bosses usually have a cooperative attitude that has helped in reduction of the mental pressure and depression. The author also deduces that cooperation from the family of the working married women ensures that they can enjoy both the family life and work responsibilities.

O'Carroll (2015) conducted a study whose objective was to determine the major factors and issues encountered by Irish women working is the corporate sector. This research concerned their work-life balance which the author explained to be an issue that has been neglected by workers. The study entailed a quantitative methodology in which there was a survey of women of various marital status working full-time or part-time. The objective was to establish the issues they face as they try to balance the expectations from their workplace and pressures and responsibilities of their personal life. The sample population in this study consisted married women, divorced women, and single women among others. These women mentioned facing various changes as they tried to balance work with their private life. Some of the adverse implications of the work-life balance included having big workloads, mental health problems and work-family conflicts resulting from working for long hours. Additionally, these pressures are heightened by the presence of employers who are unsupportive and never recognize their inputs. It was noted the issues of work-life balance rarely emerge from their family life. From the study, the author notes the necessity of a supportive system for the women in both the physical and mental aspects. It was uncovered that the work-life balance was mostly improved by the presence of a highly supportive family, spouse and close friends. Issues from work that increase pressure on women include lack of recognition, negative cultures, and strict organizational structures. This could, however, be improved by development of motivational strategies to enhance team bonding between colleagues and the company leadership. In helping women deal with the obvious pressures, work-life balance practices can be utilized. Such include institution of flexible working hours, ability to work from home and jobs shares among others.

Shah and Shah (2016) did research concerning the work-life balance in which they sought to discuss the challenges faced by women. Regarding the work life and family life, there have been great changes over the years. Initially, men were by default the providers in the family while women would take care of the children and the household. However, in the recent times, there has been an increment of the number of women who are working in addition to taking care of their homes. Some of the challenges presented by the work-life balance include lack of enough time and implications on the mental and physical health.

Rathod and Shivthare (2016) define the concept of work-life balance as one that promotes the efforts of workers to balance their resource between work and personal life. Traditionally, women have been seen as nurturers and caregivers which means their roles has been in the maintenance and management of a family. There has been a surge in the number of women who also earn a leaving for their families. However, in comparison to men, they face difficulties in balancing of the pressure from work and their responsibility of taking care of their families. This necessitates careful handling of their balance and integrates their roles to ensure optimization of their potential in the two contexts of life. The study enumerated various factors impacting the work-life balance, and they included the burden of excess workloads, the interference of work on the family roles, the need to satisfy others' expectations, prolonged working hours and have no personal life. The participants of the study explained that they have to deal with excessive work. For instance, they have tasks such as home, children, in-laws, and parents. Additionally, working married women are confronted with increasing workplace demands such as long working hours. All these issues contribute to the im...

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