There are many people that start to not make the difference between their home and their workplace because of the amount of time they spend at their workplace rather than at home. I have seen this evolve in many people and from a psychological point of view it can be both good but, I am afraid in most cases quite bad and concerning not only to the mental health of the person but also psychical health. There are many different viewpoints that can describe this as either a problem or something good but much of this is based on a context as most things are.
How the situation looks from a psychological point of view
If we look at the context of a normal family and the parents spending too much time at work we can see that even if they meet their psychological need of achieving good performance at work they are overseeing the basic necessity of their role at home as a parent and therefore neglect towards the children is created which can affect their mental health as well as behavior.
I am not saying that you should give up your psychological needs of wanting to achieve high performance at work in order to evolve your career however when becoming a parent you need to priorities based on the role that you have in the house, just as a student is required to take care of their grades in school that would be considered as his or her basic necessity at the time and age, their psychological need would be to have a home and a career.
So if we look at the role of the parent versus the role of the child within the home context they are in a way inversing their basic needs with their psychological needs.
Not even to mention that in this psychological context we have the need for love from the parents in order to offer better management of the child's journey in growing up well.
You need to priorities your time
As time goes priorities in life will change based on different factors as well as your priorities as your psychological needs. Another example would be a family in which both parents are at the same workplace and they are stuck there pretty much most of the time, when they come home they still feel as if they are in the work environment as they spend so much time together in the work environment, therefore, they end up focusing more on the problems at work rather than the problems within the household.
Not even mentioning that the child is ignored therefore the child does not follow the road that has been planned by the parents in growing up. Many do not realize but as this problem progresses over the long term the connection with the child is lost and once they reach their adolescent stage there is a very slim chance of reconnecting.
Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs states that we need to first achieve our basic needs before achieving our psychological needs. From this context, we need to understand that it is normal to want more financial gain as it is the reason most of us put in the extra hours but at the same time, we need to prioritize our time for the more important things in life.
At the end of the day life is as short as it is and at the same time unexpected as you do not know what will happen tomorrow so I would say that I want to prioritize my time in order to spend as much of it as I can with my loved ones.
At the same time for some people, we can argue that it is normal to want to stay more at work as you are more used to the environment at work rather than the environment at home however this depends very much on the type of organization you work in as well as the organizational culture they have going.
Companies want you to spend more time at the workplace
If we take the example of Google where the workplace environment is much better than at home for most people it is normal for them to want to stay more at work. They have all the necessities they need or want that they also have at home so what would be the point of going home if you are able to wash your clothes and take a shower at work?
If we make the work environment more similar to the one at home we persuade the workers to stay at work and work for longer hours.
The idea of working for extended hours or overtime can be seen from two perspectives.
First is the people that get paid on an hourly basis and secondly those who are on a salary. For the ones that are paid by the hour, it is more understandable for the ones that are on a salary the only reason they would have to stay overtime is if they are behind work or just want to go that extra mile for the “employee of the month” spot.
At that point you are prioritizing the workplace more than your family, therefore, you are going towards your psychological needs as you are not gaining any physical or financial reward, you are only pleasing your psychological need.
The organizational environment being affected by the pandemic
Even now with the pandemic forcing most of the office workers to work from home shows that there is a potential for work to become more remote with the help of technological advancements. However, this removes any work efficiency out of the equation as our homes are filled with various types of distractions from the entertainment available to family members such as children that need looking after.
Although most of you may wish to work from home as you can do the exact same work as you would in your office, you are shooting yourself in the foot in the long run without realizing it. You will start doing less and less work at a slow pace whilst being distracted by other things to the point where you will fall behind schedule, meaning that you will risk being fired for inefficient performance. When an employee is hired for a job, the employer expects high performance, even if this may not be mentioned in the work advert, it is an indirect statement in the form of an expectation from all employers.
Realizing that the workplace allows you to focus on doing your work will be the best way to understand that employers don't want you away from home, but they want you focused on being more productive in the hours you have to work per day. This will also allow you to completely disconnect from any work-related issues or matters when coming home.
Meaning that personal problems stay at home and work problems stay in the office or workplace, therefore resulting in a healthy work-life balance.