Combat Work from Home Burnout: Here’s How to Love Your Work While on Lockdown
Is your working space starting to feel smaller by the day? Your tasks a little heavier even if the load stayed the same? It’s not you. It’s the work from home burnout.
Working from home used to be that extra benefit a company offers to their employees, but now, it has turned into a survival strategy. People don’t have a choice but to stay at home and keep everything running from the comforts of their home or anywhere they may be.
Although this is not something new for remote employees, working from home during a pandemic lockdown is a whole different beast. People can easily go out, book a trip, have a massage anytime they want pre-pandemic. That hasn’t been the case since COVID-19.
Since everyone has turned into remote work, we need to be more imaginative in dealing with burnout. Let’s keep the fire in you burning. Here are four tips that’ll help you combat the stress of working from home.
1. Take short, sweet breaks
Remote workers know this: working from home is synonymous with being on back-to-back meetings, staying seated until the deadline is met, and getting bombarded with tasks that you tend to do as soon as possible. Then the next thing you know, you have forgotten to eat dinner.
This is a perfect recipe for work from home burnout. One effective way to avoid this is by taking breaks. You can either make a mental note of your break schedule or set alarms to remind you that you need to pause once in a while.
Make these breaks short but sweet. Just enough time to take your eyes off of your computer screen or eat a quick snack to keep you energized.
2. Let work stay at work
Pre-pandemic, it’s easier to detach oneself from work. Once you walk out of your office, it immediately means you own your time again. But now, work and personal life overlap. Not to mention most remote workers or those who work from home tend to log longer hours than those in the office.
The key to keeping yourselves balanced and happy is setting appropriate boundaries.
Stay online and connect with your colleagues during work hours. Let’s say your shift starts at 9 AM and ends at 5 PM; be sure to keep your work lines open and available by this time duration. Commit to a strict work schedule and disconnect after your shift.
Separating work and home life is necessary in maintaining your peace.
3. Don’t forget self-care
You deserve a treat!
Okay, we know… we can’t go out and easily treat ourselves to a nice restaurant or schedule a spa in our favorite salon. But should that stop you from treating yourself? No, it should not!
Keep self-care a priority. Take vacation leaves and spend a day off of your devices to read a book, learn a new recipe, or catch up on the latest Netflix series—whatever that is, as long as it shifts focus on you and your hobbies—go for it!
Another thing you can do is to enforce a reward system for yourself. Working while knowing you will be rewarded later for a job well done, keeps your motivation and drive always at sky-high.
4. Maintain your social network
Since COVID-19, people have been involuntarily kept away from each other. No parties, no night-outs, no sleepovers. It has everyone feel isolated. And feeling alone while experiencing a pandemic is indeed a challenge.
Maintaining your social network is not just essential for combatting work from home burnout but also in navigating the current situation.
The involuntary isolation this pandemic has enforced doesn’t have to translate to complete separation from the people important to us and those we have yet to meet. Connect with your friends and loved ones through virtual meetings such as chat or video calls and catch up on what’s happening with each other’s lives.
In a difficult situation such as the pandemic, a solid support system will help you get through.
Don’t be shy. Ask for help!
At the end of the day, we are all human. It’s normal to feel stressed sometimes or experience burnout regardless of the things we do to fight it. Besides, the COVID-19 pandemic is no normal event in the first place.
The best thing to do is to be open with each other. Discuss tasks with your team and let everyone pitch in however they can. Don’t hesitate to talk to your colleagues and reach out to your managers if you need help.
Despite the current health crisis, learning to love your work is still possible—all we need is the constant consciousness that we are not alone in this feat. Battling work from home burnout is won with a little help from others, too.