Feel Burnout Coming? Use These 5 Tips While Working Remotely
Many of us have been working from home for a while now, and the effects of being confined to our homes can start to wear on our mental health. Working consistently with no clearly set boundaries between professional and personal space can quickly lead to burnout. By following these 5 tips, you can tackle burnout before it becomes an issue.
1. STAY CONNECTED
Let’s face it, working from home can be lonely. Human beings are social creatures, and having outlets for communicating with friends and coworkers is necessary to maintain your mental health. With today’s technology, there are numerous ways you can stay connected with coworkers and friends without having to leave the house.
Find ways to incorporate Zoom calls with coworkers, even if you can discuss the task through email. Having face-to-face interactions will help to combat loneliness and will bring back a sense of normalcy to our current situation. Schedule frequent check-ins to keep each other on task and to make sure everyone is doing alright. By working together, even remotely, you can help to keep each other on task and can incorporate some social time in your workday.
Brancher Tip: Throw a Zoom happy hour at the end of your workday. Use the time to catch up with your friends and coworkers, and talk about your days. You can come up with a fun theme for your call or even play games!
2. STICK TO A SCHEDULE
Working from home offers more flexibility than you have working out of a traditional office. There’s no commute to bookend your workday, which can make the time you’re “on the clock” can feel less structured. Often, people find themselves working later than they would in the office, or logging in throughout the night to complete small tasks. This habit blurs the lines between our professional space and our personal space.
Combat this by sticking to a usual routine that you would follow during a typical workday. Are you used to waking up and working out before work? Give yourself time to practice that while working from home. Do you usually need to dress up for work? Challenge yourself to get dressed in business casual attire before logging on for the day. These small methods of maintaining normalcy will help to keep you from overworking yourself. Take the time to create a set schedule of working hours with your coworkers. Stick to these hours, and ensure that you don’t do work-related tasks once you’ve “logged off.”
Brancher Tip: Schedule a regular lunchtime during the day. This time will help you to decompress from the morning, as well as let your brain and body recharge for the rest of the workday.
3. MAINTAIN BOUNDARIES
When you’re working from home, it is essential to designate a workspace. Treat this area as your office and keep all work-related activities here. This space should be in an area with good lighting, removed from major distractions, and in a place where you can perform your job with the same level of execution you do in the office.
As well as physical boundaries, it is also important to stick to social boundaries. Respect your coworkers’ work schedules and stick to appropriate times of communication. Additionally, respect your own social boundaries. If an email comes through while you’re off the clock and can wait until the morning, hold off on replying until you log back in for work. These little ways of separating your work life and your home life will help minimize burnout.
Brancher Tip: Use the last 15 or 30 minutes before you log off for the night to clean up your workspace and organize yourself for tomorrow. This will help you to stay aware of the time and prepare for the end of the day.
4. TAKE BREAKS
Working in the office around coworkers comes with a plethora of small distractions. People stop by your desk for a quick chat, you take breaks to use the restroom or refill your coffee, and meetings help to break up the day. When you transition into working from home, the distractions are gone, and it is easy to work consistently. Remind yourself that it is necessary to get up from that chair and stretch your legs or to take 15 minutes to catch up with a friend on the phone. Studies have shown that finding ways to incorporate breaks into your workday will help to keep you more focused on the tasks at hand.
HERE’S HOW SOME OF THE BRANCHERS TAKE A FEW MINUTES DURING THE DAY TO RECHARGE:
“I like to take walks when it’s nice out, or shake some trees on Animal Crossing!”
– Jen, Growth SME
“I’ll FaceTime with my cousin who’s quarantined in Amsterdam, or watch last night’s episode of Conan at Home.”
– Kate, Content SME
“I’ll visit Jen on Animal Crossing, or schedule a virtual coffee break with friends and coworkers.”
– Kristine, Design SME
“I love taking a walk outside or catching up with friends and family!”
– Emily, Account Strategist
“I like to shift focus for a minute and work on intakes and placements for rescue dogs.”
– Anna, Growth SME
“I love to take a walk with my wife and get some fresh air!”
– Kyle, Design SME
“Me and my dog, Dudley love to play fetch in the backyard!”
– Eric, VP of Marketing
“I love taking a 10-minute dance break or searching Pinterest for my next great recipe!”
-Andrea, Office Manager
5. PRACTICE SELF-CARE
It’s 2020, and if you aren’t practicing self-care already, it’s time to jump on the bandwagon. Ensuring your mind and body are healthy not only helps to keep you from burning out, but also helps you to perform at your optimal level. Here are some examples of ways to incorporate self-care into your daily routine:
- Eat regular meals — your body needs fuel to stay energized!
- Get a good night’s sleep — doctors recommend between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night to stay healthy and sharp.
- Shower each day — staying fresh not only makes you smell better but also can help you feel better.
- Get outside and move around — studies show that fresh air can help improve productivity and decision making. On top of this, regular physical exercise can improve your mood and provide a boost of energy.
- Read a book — switch up the usual Netflix binge and trade in the sitcom for a book. Your brain will appreciate the break from technology.
Treating yourself to some R&R is important to maintaining a healthy, happy balance in your life.
Bonus Content: Stuck inside? Here are 25 stay-at-home self-care ideas to try!
Remember to take care of your physical and mental health while working from home. Maintaining a work-life balance can be trickier when your work moves into your personal space, but by taking measures to distance yourself and practice self-care, you can lower the chances of becoming burned out.
This article was originally published on the Red Branch Media blog by Jake Johnson.