The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
No matter what kind of job you have or where you work, there will come a point when you inevitably get burned out. However, if you have no control over your work situation, things can get even more stressful quickly. This is exactly what happened to many employees when COVID-19 forced most companies to reduce their workforce and transition to remote work.
As ideal as it may sound to some, working from home isn’t all fun and games. While it has many benefits and added flexibility for people to manage their personal responsibilities, this environment isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, and some might’ve had a hard time adjusting. In most cases, even after you’ve found your groove, it’s still possible to feel tired and stressed.
Signs of a Work Burnout
It’s normal to feel stressed out at work, but when it crosses the bridge and becomes something heavier, burnout will settle and may start taking its toll on your overall well-being. You are most likely experiencing work burnout if you feel the following:
- High levels of stress
- Inability to distinguish work-life boundaries
- Absence of free time for personal endeavors
- A dip in work performance
- Difficulty in staying productive
- General feelings of dissatisfaction about your job
- Lack of appetite or deteriorated physical health
If this sounds like you, know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Below are some work from home tips that will help you avoid getting burned out.
Take breaks—and don’t feel guilty about them
Getting proper time off from work will help curb the stress and anxiety that goes into having a ton of workload. Taking breaks can be in the form of a lot of things, such as the following:
- Eat your meals without facing your laptop
- Do not reply to emails or messages beyond working hours
- Set your boundaries by strictly working only 8 hours per day
When at home, it’s all too easy to have structureless days. You may jump from one role to another—one minute you’re an employee, and then an errand runner the next. When things get too overwhelming, take a break. Start with the simple practices above, and don’t feel guilty about them—so long as you get the job done within your deadlines, of course.
Indulge in a hobby
Do something completely unrelated to work! Most work-from-home jobs require employees to be on their laptops for the duration of their workday.
So, step away from the computer and try to do something else. Whether it’s taking a walk in the neighborhood or creating something with your hands, it’s important to keep yourself happy and busy with a hobby you truly enjoy. That way, you’re refreshed when you hop back on the computer.
Resist working on weekends
It may be tempting to get a head start on the looming tasks for the upcoming week, but you have to fight the urge to work during your rest days. When working hours are over, make it a habit to do something else to unwind. Don’t make your life revolve around the work that you need to finish!
Regularly chat with a work buddy
Making friends and sustaining positive relationships is an excellent way to feel more comfortable in your workplace. In fact, having a work best friend is known to reduce stress and improve team collaboration.
You’ll be more likely engaged with your job if you’re coming in to work with people you can talk to about work and other things.
Use up your leaves
Most companies offer paid time off for their employees—a benefit you should definitely use! Taking a vacation leave, whether or not you plan on going to a lovely destination, can help relax and take a breather from everything related to work.
This also includes your paid sick leaves. Many managers think that working from home means their employees are less likely to get sick—this isn’t really the case for most. So if you feel like you’re not in the best condition to work, file a leave and take care of yourself first.
Make time for human interaction
Working from home means you probably spend a lot of your days inside the house, and when you go out, it’s perhaps to run an errand or take care of other personal responsibilities. Don’t forget to include socialization in your to-do list! Set aside time to meet with friends so you can catch up and talk about things that aren’t related to work—following proper health protocols, of course.
When you find yourself in the middle of burnout, it may feel challenging to pull yourself out of the rut. By taking slow and sure steps in caring for your mental well-being, you’ll be able to get into a more productive state and have a better relationship with your work.
These things take time. The best way to achieve harmony is to recognize that you need to take a step back. While it’s important to perform well at work, the key to doing so rests on your ability to balance your professional and personal lives and have a positive attitude toward your job.
About the Author
Jo-Anne is an Online PR Specialist for Spiralytics. She aspires to contribute something good to Digital Media someday. During her free time, Jo likes to watch films & series about anything; as long as it’s not a horror movie, she’s good. She also likes to clean all the time; no wonder Monica Geller is her favorite in Friends.