Working from home has been a dramatic shift in daily life ever since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. Many places all over the globe went into lockdown, some for the long term. Some people thrived with the new work conditions and others struggled, but regardless of whether you love or hate this change, work from home burnout is a real challenge we all have to face. The act of getting ready for the day, going out into our communities, traveling to the workplace, and sharing an environment with other people made a big difference to our general health, and now those things aren’t options anymore. But don’t worry, I have been reading, gathering, and practicing a number of techniques that will get you back to feeling like normal in no time. Here are my top 10 things to do to help with work from home burnout:
People don’t take the health benefits of the outdoors seriously, but even just a little time outside each day makes a huge difference. You need fresh air and sunshine in order to stay healthy, so take the time to get out for a walk, or to lounge in the backyard for a while. Most people don’t get enough vitamin D at the best of times, and locking yourself inside all the time isn’t going to help with that.
Go for a Walk
Being outside is a start, but moving your body is crucial to your health as well. Most work-from-home jobs have you sitting at a desk all day, and when your workday ends you might be tempted to migrate to the couch and sit all over again. Not getting enough exercise doesn’t just put you out of shape but it can cause depression. So do yourself a favor and move, even if it’s just for a casual stroll around the block.
Take Proper Breaks
Without coworkers around to lure you out for lunch, you might be tempted to just keep working. Breaks are important for rest and relaxation, but they also break up the workday into more manageable chunks, Big tasks are easier to tackle when they’re done one piece at a time, so do yourself and your work a favor by being well-rested and taking your breaks.
Take Extra Breaks
Okay, maybe don’t tell your boss about this one. But the primary benefit to having no supervision is to let yourself off the hook a little bit. You can be more productive and more creative when you’re feeling good, so don’t be ashamed to take an extra 5 or 10-minute breather here and there to give yourself a boost. Even from a business standpoint, happy and healthy people are better workers. You’re doing everyone a favor when you cut yourself some slack.
When you’re feeling that work from home burnout it can be so easy to order delivery, but cooking is a really healthy activity that can be good for both your mind and body. Scheduling in some healthy cooking days into your week not only gets you up and participating in a hobby, but it also gives you something to look forward to, breaks up the week, and – of course – nourishes you. Your body needs good fuel to keep up the good work.
This is really hard, and you’re doing a great job. Give yourself credit where credit is due, and reward yourself for even the small successes. Self-care is more important than ever, so find small reasons to be nice to yourself. If you’ve submitted work on time, finished checking your emails, wrapped up a challenging phone call with a customer, or anything else, consider setting up a reward system for yourself so your good deeds don’t go unnoticed.
Separate Work and Home
Keeping your workspace and your home space as separate as possible helps reduce work from home burnout by a lot. Try to set aside a small space in your home to be your workspace. If you’re working in the same spot that you’re relaxing, you can start to feel like you’re living at work. Split up the two by any means possible, even if that means changing clothes when you get off of work or turning on music when you’re done the workday.
You may have thought you were off the hook when I glossed over this telling you to take a walk, but proper. regular exercise is important. Getting your heart rate up and using your muscles doesn’t just keep your body healthy, it keeps your mind healthy too and releases those feel-good endorphins that help to pull you out of a rut. Find a routine that works for you and commit to doing it regularly.
Talk to People
You’re in lockdown, but you’re not disconnected. Take the time to phone a friend, video chat with a family member, or even to send a friendly email to a coworker that you miss seeing every day. Humans are pack animals and we thrive on connections. Even the most introverted among us need human contact to keep the blues away. If you’re feeling work from home burnout, a little bit of connection with others might be what you need to boost you back up again.
Take Time Off
When all else fails, use up your sick days or your vacation time and get some rest. It’s okay to get tired sometimes, and a little time off might be just what you need to get you back on your feet. You deserve to be your happiest, healthiest self, and at the end of the day, when you’re feeling great your employers will see the benefit in that as well.
This pandemic has been longer than any of us had imagined, and it’s okay to be tired. Hopefully, this list helps you with your work from home burnout, but even if it doesn’t just remember to be kind and patient with yourself. The most important thing is that you take care of yourself, whatever that means to you. We’ll get through this together,