6 Simple Habits Successful Women Use Every Day to Avoid Burnout

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May 24, 2024 at 10:54PM UTC
Although there are many benefits to the growing remote work trend, the difficulties of working from home cannot be ignored. Work from home burnout — also referred to as remote work fatigue — is one of the most common problems that comes from an unbalanced work from home lifestyle.
The number of people who are experiencing burnout while working remotely is growing. Monster’s poll results from 2020 found that over two-thirds, or 69%, of employees are experiencing burnout symptoms while working remotely. This statistic shows an increase of 17% from May to July. 
Finding your optimal work-life balance will likely take some work, especially when you’re working from home. You will need to stay organized, control your mindset, and take intentional steps to make sure you are maintaining your personal health, not just performing at work. In the following article, you will find simple tips to help you reach your goals and also prevent work from home burnout.

How to Recognize Work From Home Burnout

In general, work burnout tends to get mistaken for stress. If not addressed however, chronic stress will continue to wear you down, eventually leading to burnout. But burnout consists of much more than just prolonged stress. Even though the burnout symptoms can be more severe, they are still sometimes associated with lack of sleep or dynamic work week. Recognizing that you are experiencing burnout is an important step. 
So what is burnout? It’s your body’s and mind’s way of crying out for help due to unbearable exhaustion. Living a hectic lifestyle, without taking time to decompress, will ultimately deteriorate your mental and physical health. Common symptoms of work burnout include:
  • Chronic stress
  • Constant irritation and impatience
  • Exhaustion
  • Poor productivity
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • High blood pressure
  • Unexplained headaches, stomach, or bowel problems
  • A weakened immune system
Whether you have some of these symptoms or not, it’s never a bad time to work on prevention — that’s why we’re bringing you these useful tips for preventing work from home burnout.

1. Start your day right.

Mornings matter. They set the tone for the rest of the day, and having an intentional morning routine can be a great tool for preventing work from home burnout. A morning routine that charges you with positive energy and brings you peace can do wonders. The benefits of a morning routine are:
  • Develop a mindset that you are in control of your day
  • Reduce stress levels
  • Increase productivity
  • Boost motivation
  • Get grounded
Embrace calm and slow mornings. Wake up a little bit earlier if needed. Create a morning routine that relaxes you and works in favor of your mental and physical health. Assigning just 20 minutes of morning peace can be of great help.
Before you open your first email, engage in a calming activity. This can be journaling, reading your favorite blog, jogging, listening to a podcast, meditating, or drinking coffee in peace. Do whatever contributes to your morning relaxation. 

2. Create a work schedule.

Working from home can easily turn into a 24/7 roller-coaster. The moment you wake up, you take your laptop “just to check something.” That same excuse comes up dozens of times more outside your work hours. Before you know it, you’ll be spending almost every hour of every day thinking about your job.
Don’t let the flexibility of remote work take over your life. Set your work hours. When the time runs out, detach yourself from work. Turn off your work email notifications. Let your colleagues and boss know that you won’t be available after working hours. You need to let your mind disconnect. Even if you can’t work within the same block of hours each day, make sure you set your daily limit. Learn how to establish that work-life balance. 

3. Establish a sleeping schedule.

Sleep is pivotal for staying healthy. Without a good night’s sleep, your body can’t recover from the work it had to endure. 
The biggest enemy of a healthy sleeping habit is inconsistent bedtime. Getting to bed around the same time every day and waking up at the same time helps your body learn and adopt this habit. Falling asleep and waking up will be much easier if you have a routine.
Allow your body and mind to wind down a few hours before bed. It’s recommendable that you stay off your phone at least 30 minutes before bed. The blue light that your cell phone screen emits restrains the hormone production that controls your sleep-wake cycle. Thus, the phone is making it harder for you to fall asleep as well as wake up in the morning. 

4. Socialize.

Isolation from your friends and family is a big contributing factor to work from home burnout. Did you know that loneliness reduces longevity more than drinking, smoking, or obesity? Research showed that loneliness reduces life expectancy by 70% while smoking reduces it by 50%, drinking by 30%, and obesity by 20%.  
Your work-life mustn’t take away your social life. Socializing might not be the same as it used to be before the pandemic, but you should still find ways to connect with your loved ones. 
Some easy ways to connect with others? Organize movie nights with your friends via video. Get on the phone with people who bring you joy every day. This adult time is even more important when working from home, as many people are spending their days with their children. Talking with your favorite people about your worries and having a few good laughs can lessen the burden. 

5. Spend time outside.

How much time do you spend outside? Fresh air is important for our cognitive function. Getting some fresh air in your lungs can boost the oxygen level in your brain, leaving you with more energy and better concentration and memory. This overall mood improvement is sure to transfer to your workday too, helping prevent work from home burnout.
Try to spend some time outside every day. You can take your dog for a walk, soak up some sun in the backyard, ride your bike to the grocery shop, or just take a coffee-to-go and sit in a park. The outside world is a great tool for taking your mind off work, so make sure to give your brain a dose of fresh air regularly.  

6. Engage in physical activity.

Lack of physical activity can negatively affect your sleeping habits, eating habits, and overall function of your body and mind. Switching from your couch to your chair doesn’t fall under the category of physical activity – just to clarify. You need to get your body moving.
Make room in your schedule for regular exercise. No matter how hectic your schedule is, find at least a 30-minute slot for doing some sort of physical activity. Even a simple walk around the block is useful. 
Filling your work break with a quick activity is a great tactic for reducing stress. As you’ve probably heard many times before, taking regular breaks is crucial for maintaining your productivity and preventing work from home burnout. Within that 20-30 minute break, do a little exercise such as doing some yoga, taking a walk, running on a treadmill, or similar. This will help you reset and get you ready to tackle the rest of your work responsibilities.  

Final Thoughts

Nothing should be more important than your health. If your mental and physical health starts suffering, the consequences will reflect on your work. Because your health is the foundation for a successful and happy life, it should sit at the top of your priority list.  
Whenever you are feeling like you are reaching the point of work from home burnout, remember that you are in control. Use the tactics above to reset your mindset and organize your life in a way that contributes to your well-being. Nothing should be more important than health. 
This guest post was written by Kristin Savage. Kristin nourishes, sparks and empowers using the magic of a word. Along with pursuing her degree in Creative Writing, Kristin was gaining experience in the publishing industry, with expertise in marketing strategy for publishers and authors.
This article originally appeared in Hive — the world's first democratically built productivity platform. Learn more at Hive.com.

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