How To Avoid Burnout While Working From Home

June 10, 2020 Catherine Tacopina

Remote work certainly has its perks, but for many of us it also has its challenges. In this blog series, we’ll focus on the home office, discussing ways to adapt, and conquer—both as an employer and an employee. This is post 19 of the series. You can follow the rest of the series and read our past posts here.

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Professionals who have made the switch to a remote work set-up know that this type of work environment comes with its unique set of benefits and challenges. Although you might have more flexibility, the blurred lines between your work and home life can be difficult to overcome. With your home and office being in the same place, you might find yourself working all the time, feeling isolated, and struggling to stay motivated. If you experience any of these feelings, it’s a clear sign that you are on the road to burnout. The good news is that if you recognize any of these red flags, you can start reversing and avoiding the symptoms altogether. Learn how to avoid burnout while working from home by taking these steps: 

Switch up your routine

By now, you may have a solid routine in place to help you get through your remote workday. While routines can be exactly what we need in order to be productive, the monotony and structure they come with can unintentionally cause burnout. In order to avoid this kind of exhaustion, there are a couple of quick changes you can make to switch up your routine. For example, if you exercise after the workday is over, try working out in the morning. You might find that this kind of change can help you be more productive throughout the course of the day!

Have a schedule

One crucial way you can avoid burnout is by making a daily schedule for yourself. Doing so can help you stay focused and on-task, two things which are critical in helping you feel productive during the day.  When it comes to making your schedule, structure it so that you’re able to complete your simplest and least time-consuming tasks first. For example, you can start your day by answering emails and performing other light tasks, while saving time and brainpower for later in the day. However, if the opposite works better for you, go for it! Once you complete your tasks, however, be sure to cross them off your list—a physical indicator of your progress is a great way to stay motivated!

Maintain consistent communication with your team

Since the office space naturally facilitates more team communication than a remote work setup, you may find yourself feeling isolated and disconnected at times.  To boost your mood and fight burnout, try to facilitate regular communication with your team through technology. With the help of video conferencing tools like Zoom and messaging platforms like Slack, for example, you can still collaborate with your team on projects and new initiatives on a regular basis. In addition, a great way to prevent burnout is by scheduling virtual happy hours and breaks together. 

Be sure to take breaks

While a major perk of working from home is that you get to avoid a commute, having a commute can also give you a daily opportunity to take a break and disconnect from the stressors of the day. As a result, remote employees interested in learning how to avoid burnout should start building some time into their days to take breaks.  While there may be times where you would rather get through every task on your list without interruption, it’s very important to make this effort to detach. In order to keep your head clear and avoid burnout, consider taking a walk, spend some time reading, or go to a local coffee shop for an afternoon pick-me-up.

Keep your work-life balance in check

When your professional and home environments are the same, it can be very challenging to maintain a strong work-life balance. If you fail to keep one, you could end up suffering from burnout which can ultimately make you less productive. In order to maintain a strong work-life balance and avoid burnout, set boundaries for yourself. This could mean anything from signing off at a certain time every day or not answering non-urgent emails after work hours. It could also mean asking for more flexible work hours so that you can properly attend to your personal responsibilities and work when you can be your most productive.

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