to improve your work-life balance - at home

Remember the word NO.

Use it when you are overwhelmed or when you feel like you're about to become overwhelmed.

Set a boundary for yourself

Set a boundary between the time you dedicate to work and the time that is yours - which you can spend as you wish. If your time is not yet in your life, create it!

Think about your priorities.

Write them down. Make sure they're done, don't worry about the rest. By sharing tasks, you set an example for your children. What do you want to become normal for them as they enter relationships?

Encourage your children equally.

Encourage children to take on equal and equally frequent household tasks - show them that the work that benefits us all (cooking, cleaning, tidying) can and should be done by everyone.

Equal partnership.

Approach parental responsibilities (caring, educating, and supporting children) equally. This not only allows for easier balancing of professional and personal life but also helps build beautiful and authentic relationships within the family - starting from pregnancy.

Active fatherhood.

Active fatherhood should be understood as a prerequisite that begins with pregnancy planning.

Ask for help.

Ask for help.

Know the legislation.

Get to know the legislation, your rights and make use of them (flexible forms of work, compensation and leave).

Time for rest.

Take some time to rest - it's your right.

In the past, there were strictly defined roles for family members and partnerships that were based on the assumption that men had a central and most important role. During old patriarchal relationship patterns, women and children were subservient to men (who were also the part of the population that established themselves outside of the home and were considered the sole provider for the family). Partners were limited to housework-related activities at home, while mothers or women were considered primary caregivers because they were believed to be better equipped for emotional care for children, while men were limited to providing financially for the family. After centuries of such relationships and numerous studies that showed the harmfulness of such family and partnership dynamics, efforts related to active fatherhood have emerged since the late 20th century. Active fatherhood emphasizes emotional care and cooperation in raising and nurturing the child (from pregnancy onwards). Active fatherhood improves men’s life satisfaction, affects children (and the relationships fathers develop with their children), as well as partner relationships and the broader family dynamics. Undoubtedly, active fatherhood is an important element in balancing professional and personal life, providing new types of role models for children, and thus enabling long-term overcoming of gender stereotypes and roles.

Around the world, without exception, women perform three-quarters of unpaid care work, on average dedicating three times more time to it than men. Currently, there is no country in the world where men and women perform an equal share of this type of work, which consequently affects not only the constant shortage of time felt by women (and thus also difficulties in balancing professional and personal life), but also the opportunities for women’s participation in the labor market, and consequently in ensuring their (economic) freedom (ILO, 2019). Unpaid work represents obligations that are necessary for the survival of society and individuals, and from which we all benefit, so it is important that we are all equally included in fulfilling these obligations. There is certainly nothing wrong with a woman deciding, after discussion in a partnership or family relationship, to take on a greater share of this burden, but this must be her choice, something that must not be confused with the supposed natural desire and need of women to invisibly care, clean, cook, and wash for everyone around them. Despite the fact that we most often talk about the balancing of professional and personal life – due to the burden of unpaid work that women take on, in the context of women, it is necessary to highlight the negative effects this has on men, their well-being and relationships. Men, burdened by gender stereotypes that demand high performance in the workplace, success and career, can find themselves in a situation where the imbalance is mainly towards work. In addition, in recent years, many men wishing to adopt a more active parenting role have encountered disapproval and misunderstanding from both employers and wider society, which is indicative of the traditional nature of gender and parental roles in our society.

tips and measures


Many fathers in rural areas face difficulties in balancing their roles in raising and caring for their children with the demands of their work. This is especially true for fathers who work in agriculture, where seasonal peaks, dangerous machinery, and steep terrain make it a challenge to provide both for the economic needs of their farm and for their children’s well-being.

In the past, there were strict roles for family members and partnerships based on the assumption that men held the central and most important role. During the times of old patriarchal relationship patterns, it was believed that women and children were subordinate to men (who also represented the part of the population that established themselves outside the home and were considered the only providers for the family). It was assumed that women were limited to home-based activities related to care for the home and family. Mothers or women were considered the primary caregivers, and those who were best at emotionally caring for and nurturing children, while men’s care was limited to financial survival. After centuries of maintaining such relationships and numerous studies that have shown the harmfulness of these family (and partnership) dynamics, efforts related to active fatherhood, which also emphasizes emotional care and involvement in the upbringing and care of the child (from pregnancy onward), have been underway since the end of the 20th century. Active fatherhood improves men’s life satisfaction, impacts children (and the relationships that fathers develop with children), and also impacts partnerships and broader family dynamics. Undoubtedly, active fatherhood is an essential element in balancing professional and personal life, providing children with new types of role models and enabling the long-term transcendence of gender stereotypes and gender roles.

In the past, on a farm, only men or the owner and head of the farm were often insured and socially secure. The contribution of women to the farm was often forgotten. Fortunately, the trend is slowly turning and social security for women is also taken care of. However, many women are employed outside the farm and are responsible for “women’s” work on the farm upon their return from work. The burden on women is great.

Even agriculturally insured individuals have the option of utilizing part-time employment, just like self-employed individuals and other employees. This provides social security for people in rural areas, as well as economic security since they are able to save some money, which is not easy to earn on the farm. It is essential that social welfare centers are aware of the possibilities and rights that agriculturally insured individuals have, and inform them about it.

On the farm, there are often expressed concerns related to childcare during vacations (especially with the care of younger children who cannot join their parents at work) and longer operation of kindergartens in the afternoon hours, which would positively affect their opportunities to balance their professional and private life. It would be worth checking the organization of childcare for parents who are included in other non-standard employment.

After-school activities for children in rural areas often take place during hours when there is work in the barn on the farm or when children have to be driven several kilometers to school. This represents an additional time burden for parents, a disruption of work, increased fuel consumption and impracticality. Proposed solutions include activities after school hours or eliminating the need for children to return home and back to school. Another solution could be organized public transport. Rural children are less likely to participate in extracurricular activities and may be disadvantaged as a result.

Parents who live in rural areas, especially those who are involved in agricultural activities, have difficulty attending school events organized during their working hours in the barn or during other responsibilities, which puts them in an uncomfortable position that children undoubtedly feel as well.

Due to the suspension of basic services in rural areas, many have found themselves in a difficult situation. Younger generations have adapted to digitalization, but the elderly often do not have access to computers and internet connections, nor do they have adequate infrastructure or transportation. Many are struggling because they do not have access to postal, banking, and other services. It is also proposed to have more field visits from social work centers and mobile preventive health checkups, as the real problems are often hidden from institutional eyes.

Daily centers for elderly people in rural areas contribute to maintaining jobs in rural areas, while also enabling people to stay in rural areas when they are older and not having to move to nursing homes in cities. Daily centers would also significantly relieve women, who mostly take care of elderly people.

In the framework of the neMOČ PODEŽELJA project, a person has been employed by KGZS since the summer of 2021 to provide psychosocial assistance to farmers. Mental health is still a taboo subject, but we persistently tackle it and bite into it. Other free forms of psychological support are also available, mainly from associations and organizations operating at the national level. Awareness raising is necessary through all possible channels – through associations, NGOs, social work centers, agricultural advisory services, etc.

The state must approach raising awareness and educating on the importance of active fatherhood, balancing professional and personal life, and especially in addressing the consequences of current gender inequality in rural areas as identified in the Survey on Gender Equality in Rural Areas (TERA, 2022): violence and lack of support services, alcoholism, geographical distance from essential infrastructure, and overall life satisfaction – also as a result of stereotypical gender roles.


TO IMPROVE YOUR WORK-LIFE BALANCE - for work outside the farm

Realistic goals.

Start by writing down realistic goals for tasks and obligations that you need to complete during the day. Approach your work by first completing the most urgent tasks and later allocate time for less urgent duties.

Plan and take some time to rest!

It is very important to take breaks during work and spend this time doing what you enjoy, without worrying about work or the responsibilities that wait for you after the break.

Discuss the importance of balancing professional and personal life.

If possible, discussion in the workplace can be beneficial to the entire team. In connection with this, you can arrange for more flexible work arrangements that will make it easier for you to manage your time for work and personal life.

Get to know the legislation.

Discover the legislative options available to you for easier balancing of your professional and personal life.

Monitor your wellbeing.

Regularly monitor your well-being and talk to your colleagues, friends, or family members about any potential decline in your mental health. Seek help, which is a sign of courage rather than weakness!

Enakost spolov označuje enake pravice, enake možnosti, enake odgovornosti in enako obravnavo moških in žensk, v javnem in zasebnem življenju. Pomembno je poudariti, da enakost ne pomeni niti ne zasleduje istosti, gre zgolj za enakost v pravicah, odgovornostih in možnostih, ne glede na to ali se rodimo kot moški ali kot ženske. Enakosti spolov ne smemo razumeti kot izključno ženskega vprašanja, saj na enakovreden način zadeva tudi moške, njihove pravice in možnosti. Enakost spolov lahko razumemo tudi kot predpogoj demokracije in pomemben pokazatelj trajnostnega razvoja.

Enakopravnost spolov je ožji pojem od enakosti spolov, opredeljuje pa predvsem pravno zagotovljeno enakost moških in žensk, ki pa še ne pomeni da lahko spoli tudi v praksi živijo enako, so deležni enakih možnosti in enake obravnave. 

Enaka delitev gospodinjskih obveznosti pomeni, da si tako ženske kot moški delijo vse naloge in zadolžitve, ki sodijo v okvir gospodinjskega dela. Enaka delitev je zelo pomembna, saj predstavlja pogoj ki vodi k enakosti spolov.

Spolne vloge predstavljajo družbene norme, ki veljajo kot primerne, zaželene in pričakovane za pripadnike oziroma pripadnice točno določenega spola. Pri spolnih vlogah lahko pogosto opazimo prisotnost tradicionalnega razumevanja vloge spolov, ki so povezane zlasti z gospodinjskim delom ali dostopom do financ in moči po drugi strani. Spolne norme se lahko sčasoma spreminjajo. 

Usklajevanje poklicnega in zasebnega življenja predvideva iskanje ravnovesja med delom in življenjskim stilom, ki smo si ga izbrali (družina, prosti čas, …). Za uveljavljanje enakosti spolov in enakih možnosti obeh spolov je nujno usklajevanje poklicnega in zasebnega življenja, ki ne vodi v dvojno ali trojno obremenjenost žensk.

S hegemono moškostjo označujemo vse kulturne norme, ki moškost povezujejo z močjo, uspehom in ekonomskimi dosežki. Včasih se hegemona moškost naslavlja tudi kot toksična moškost, saj gre za škodljive vzorce moškosti, ki imajo negativen vpliva na moške in na ženske, govorimo lahko celo o ceni moškosti, ki prinaša moškim številne (tudi zdravstvene) težave in povzroča škodo.

Aktivno očetovstvo predvideva enakovredno vključenost moških v skrbstvene obveznosti povezane z nego in vzgojo otroka in pomeni preseganje tradicionalne stereotipne vloge moškega, kot tistega, ki je za otroke skrbel z udejanjanjem zunaj doma – z delom in finančno podporo. Namesto tega aktivno očetovstvo predvideva enakovredno nudenje čustvene opore otrokom tudi s strani očetov. 

Po  mednarodni definiciji, ki jo je po priporočilu odbora ministrov v dokumentu sprejel Svet Evrope, lahko seksizem označimo kot izraz “zgodovinsko neenakih razmerij moči” med moškimi in ženskami, kar vodi v diskriminacijo in preprečuje polno emancipacijo oziroma napredek žensk v družbi.

Spolna delitev dela predpostavlja, da ženske in moški opravljajo različna dela, pri čemer je delitev tesno povezana z njihovim spolom. V praksi to pomeni, da ženske opravljajo določena dela, zato ker so ženske in obenem to predstavlja razlog zakaj moških teh istih del ne opravljajo.

Skrbstveno delo je povezano z nudenjem nege in skrbi tistim, ki jo potrebujejo: otrokom, bolnim, starejšim. Navadno, zaradi tradicionalnih spolnih vlog in delitve dela so za skrbstveno delo zadolžene predvsem ženske.

Demokratični primanjkljaj predvideva vpliv, ki ga ima manjša zastopanost žensk (in s tem posledično višja zastopanost moških) na legitimnost demokracije. 

Neplačano delo predvideva opravljanje zelo pomembnega dela (družbeno koristnega in nujnega – na primer skrbstvenega in gospodinjskega dela), za katerega pa ni predvidenega nobenega plačila. Neplačano delo je neenakomerno razporejeno med spoloma – ženske opravijo veliko večjo količino tovrstnega dela kot moški.

The thesis analyses the changes in the social and physical environment that affect the experiences and challenges faced by rural women, with a particular focus on the process of individualisation, which can also be understood as a disrupter of traditional norms for individuals. The empirical part consists of an analysis of the answers given by rural women from Brežice, with a particular focus on the following issues: despite their great contribution and the large amount of work they do, women are without (their own) income and their social security is threatened. The most significant constraint to individualisation is the way in which decisions are taken, with greater decision-making power being exercised by the younger generation of women, who are also better educated. 

In the paper, the author highlights some aspects of rurality that explain the dominant discourse used both by victims of violence and by institutions and services that come into contact with victims or deal with violence (in rural settings). Reporting and prevention of violence in rural areas is made more difficult by living in environments where everyone knows everyone, which has an impact on both unreliable reporting of experienced or observed violence and high tolerance of violence. The author also pays special attention to support services, which in these settings usually (personally) know both the perpetrator and the victim, which may affect their ability to identify violence. 

SOURCE: Domestic violence in settings where everyone knows everyone. Social Work, Vol. 55, Issue 1/2, pp. 39-53.


The master’s thesis deals with the analysis of the social and economic situation of women on farms in the Podravje region. The empirical part of the research is based on the analysis of the answers of fifty women (members and holders of agricultural holdings) who answered a questionnaire. The most important findings of the survey indicated that women holders are more empowered to take decisions than members of agricultural holdings. While only a good third of female farmers consider themselves to be economically independent, on the other hand, there are 22% of all respondents who do not have pension and invalidity insurance.

The thesis analyses the socio-economic situation of rural women in the Upper Vipava Valley. The empirical part of the analysis is based on a survey conducted on a sample of sixty peasant women (members of the Upper Vipava Peasant Women’s Association), which revealed a number of challenges that stand in the way of achieving equal status for women in rural areas: the low number of women as farm owners; women’s poorer social security; the traditional gender division of labour; the lack of women in public and political life, organising and participation. The author particularly highlights the improvement of infrastructural living conditions as an important element in improving the situation of women in rural areas (facilitating access to services, bringing certain services closer to rural areas).

This master thesis analyses the consequences of the individualisation process for rural women, providing a comparative insight into the socio-economic situation and role of rural women in the 20th century and today. The author concludes that time has brought a certain improvement in the quality of life of rural women, but that the progress in the social life of women has not been satisfactory. Even today, rural women are excluded from public and political life, overburdened with work (the division of labour is largely influenced by gender and related expectations) and economically dependent, which is evidence of the persistence of androcentrism in the everyday lives of rural women.

The thesis presents the traditional perception of rural women, with a special emphasis on the ways they are represented in Slovenian literature, and the theoretical part of the thesis is based on the changes that have taken place, especially in the field of work (division of labour, valuation of work). In the empirical part, the thesis examines the presence and persistence of traditional divisions of labour – it is found that such patterns of division of labour are still very much present, as women are the ones who do most of the work related to caring for the home and family (housework, education), while men do the work related to machinery.

The theoretical part of the thesis highlights some of the specific features of violence against rural women (strong dependence on partners; low self-esteem; lower level of education; strong attachment to the environment; geographical distance to support systems and services; and the existence of traditional gender roles), while the empirical part provides an assessment of exposure to domestic violence. The author concludes that women (regardless of education and age) are more likely to be exposed to harshness, indignation, unfriendliness and quick anger, with younger women in the study sample tolerating violence to a greater extent than older women. 

This master’s thesis explores the possibilities and advancements in reconciling work and personal life in the village of Cven. The author emphasizes the importance of balancing work and personal life as one of the major factors for equal division of labor between genders. Special attention is given to the significance of women’s economic independence through supplementary activities or employment outside the family. The work also highlights the fact that women are still subject to the wishes or needs of the family when it comes to using their income. Due to the double burden of paid and unpaid work (women mostly perform large amounts of unpaid labor), they are heavily burdened, tired, stressed, and unable to use their vacation time.