How Do You Identify Burnout?
How do you know if you are among the 69% of remote workers currently suffering from burnout? While the symptoms can look different for everyone, these are a few of the tell-tale signs:
- Feeling negative or apathetic toward work
- Trouble falling asleep or staying asleep
- Forgetfulness, or an impaired sense of the passage of time
- Using substances as coping mechanisms
- Decreased efficiency — for example, finding yourself re-reading the same sentence over and over
If you have noticed some of these red flags in your life lately, you could be burned out. Fortunately, there are several effective ways to banish burnout and restore your work-life balance. Consider these three ideas.
1. Establish Time Boundaries for Work-From-Home
Many remote workers report feeling as though they are never “off” work. As Dr. Heather DeQuincey put it in a now-viral tweet: “I think we need to stop calling it ‘working from home’ and start calling it ‘living at work.’”
It is not hard to see how such nonstop connectivity can lead to burnout. Inc. explains one of the most effective ways to combat this problem is establishing firm temporal boundaries and sticking to them. Create a work schedule, write it down, and let your family and co-workers know that these are the times you will be available. It may be difficult at first, but in the end, it will save you countless wasted hours, not to mention your sanity.
2. Set Physical Boundaries to Minimize Burnout
Establish a designated workspace in your home. Try to restrict your work to this place as much as possible. Real Simple notes that ideally, your work area should be near a window where you can get some natural light, or at the very least should be well-lit and at a comfortable temperature. Choose an area that is free from visible distractions, including piles of clutter. A disorganized or chaotic work area disrupts your energy flow. Further, clutter tends to breed negative thoughts, so it should be dealt with accordingly. Any distracting objects or unfinished projects should be out of sight.
3. Automate Tasks When Possible to Beat Tasks Sucking Up Time
Remember that you can pick tips and tools that our K2 team recommends. Further, remember our guidance on outsourcing. Learning to say no will make a difference in your business and work-life balance. And yes, there is an app for that!
Still Not Enough?
However, if things do not get better for you, call for professional help. Unfortunately, I know of multiple people who have chosen suicide based on their stress levels in the last 60 days. Get help from places like the Canada Suicide Prevention Service at 1-833-456-4566 or from your medical professionals. While many of us offer our friendship and support, we often do not know our friends and colleagues are desperate for help. Watch out for the symptoms above in yourself, family, friends, and colleagues.