7 Ways Avoid Remote Work Burnout

According to a poll conducted by Gallup in 2020, remote workers now experience more burnout than on-site office workers. Keeping burnout at bay may seem impossible with remote work, work-life balance, family commitments, and an ongoing pandemic. However, it’s not. 

If you’re a remote worker and you feel like you’re experiencing some symptoms of burnout, let’s get talking. In this article, we share seven tips to avoid burnout and stay positive while working from home.

💛 Practice self-care

The term self-care can mean different things to different people. For some, it can mean removing all distractions and engaging in a relaxing activity, and for others, it can mean participating in a hobby they love. Begin by listing out the activities you enjoy doing and including them in your daily routine before or after work. Here are a few things to do to practice self-care and avoid burnout :

  • Read a book
  • Play with your kids or pets
  • Catch up on your favourite show or movie
  • Take a nap
  • Stretch or exercise
  • Call a friend 

⏰ Set boundaries

Did you know that since the start of the pandemic, the average workday has been lengthened by 48.5 minutes? Therefore, it is imperative to have a clear separation between work and personal hours. Start by setting a start and an end time for your workday. Set time for breaks and meals, and control how much information you access while you’re not working. If it helps, you can also add your availability hours on the signature of your email.

Remember, you cannot be efficient or productive if you’re burnt out.

🍃 Get some fresh air

Studies show that sitting indoors all day with artificial light can throw off your internal rhythms. So if you’re at your desk from 9 to 5, take some time before or after work to go out for a short walk. Just like meditation, spending some time outside can help you relax and clear your mind’s workload. If it is not possible to get out of your house, you can always open your windows or take a small stroll in your backyard. Sometimes a little bit of wind and greenery is just the kind of relaxation you need.

✏️ Plan your day

Creating a schedule for your tasks allows you to dedicate enough time to each task without interruption. Take your meetings, breaks, and other calls into account to know exactly how much time each task will take. A well-known time management tip is to complete your most important tasks first. If you are an employee juggling work and family, you need to prioritise tasks, especially when you have busy days. Keep track of your tasks by using to-do lists or excel sheets. This allows you to get all of your work done with structure. 

💤 Pay attention to your sleep 

Going to bed at the right (and same) time every day gives your body and mind enough time to recharge fully. As remote workers, you are subjected to numerous stressors throughout the day. Getting this much-needed sleep allows us to reset every night and take on the coming day with renewed alertness and motivation. Some best practices that you can follow before going to bed are keeping your phones aside at least an hour before bed, reading and practising breathing exercises. 

✅ Make your workspace ergonomically sound

Most remote workers face burnout because their workspaces aren’t comfortable enough. The first step to working safely and comfortably is to have a basic home office set up. This includes an office desk, an ergonomic chair and an extended keyboard and mouse set. Combining these three must-have ergonomic items can give you a much more safe and productive experience, avoiding burnout for the most part. 

When it comes to your health, prevention is always better than cure. Our partners, Spectrum Optimise, are Ireland’s leading ergonomics experts with a team of physiotherapists that will assess your workplace for you and give you some solid advice on correcting your posture and working comfortably. Learn more here.

💻 Combat Zoom Fatigue

Zoom Fatigue” or “Video Call Fatigue” refers to the exhaustion you feel while participating in video calls. Take a break from virtual socialising by taking time to unplug and using alternative ways to connect with colleagues, family and friends. Here are a few ideas:

  • Evaluate if a video meeting is necessary at work or if it can be done via email/audio call.
  • Don’t schedule back-to-back video calls.
  • Follow the 20-20-20 technique – Every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This will allow your eyes to refocus and reduce strain on them.
  • Stay hydrated, stretch and get up from your desk every hour. 

Want to learn more about burnout? We have put together a guide to help you identify the signs of burnout and prevent it