The coronavirus pandemic has turned our lives in more ways than one. People around the world working from home are complaining of feeling lethargic and tired throughout the day. Many also feel that despite working for long odd hours, the work doesn’t seem to end.
Everything has begun to look different including our daily lives. Working indoors longer than necessary has caused us to lose out on our daily cues like exposure to sunlight among others. Not only that, one of the evident reasons why people are working for longer hours than usual from home is because there is no systematic physical segregation between work and home.
Somewhere, the global crisis has blurred the line between personal and professional life, which is leaving a huge impact on the energy levels of people. Another challenge that seems to have arisen is realizing when the workday has begun or ended or for that matter, what day it is.
Social media platform
Even socialisation has turned out to be less effective as a tool to refresh and reset. And not to forget, the norm of social distancing has made us spend endless time scrolling through social media platforms. Not denying the fact that staying connected with others is essential, but too much of it proves to be fatal in terms of reducing our productivity, causing anxiousness, and draining energy. The calendar simply bleeds from one activity to the next, causing nothing but stress, lack of sleep, and immense isolation.
In general, the saying as the leader goes, so goes the team is coming true, in a literal sense, notwithstanding the circumstances; thereby missing out on some of the major elements – Boundaries. Rituals. Routines. Whether it is the lack of limitation on our work hours; inflexibility between home, work, and personal commitments; or the loss of trust and safety due to external factors.
And while each one of us continues to stay engaged and add value whilst working from home, acknowledging the privilege that comes along with it; we also realized the fact that for a few of us, the home has become a workplace and is no longer a space of comfort. In fact, as commonly observed, there’s still that ‘I need to perform, show up, and prove that I am a good employee so they retain me’ pressure amidst professionals, owing to heavy job terminations around the world.
Thus, the only way to cope with work from home burnout is to recognize and accept the situation, find ways to alleviate stress, structure in day-to-day life, and implement a routine.
Everyone manifests strain, pressure, and tension differently. You may be irritable or angry, or you may seem withdrawn or depressed. But the key to maintaining sanity amidst ongoing chaos lies in taking time off from work every now and then.
Besides, other steps that may aid the whole experience include creating a dedicated work from home space, setting goals and tracking progress on a regular basis, keeping the digital devices away for a few hours each day, using indicators to begin and end the day, and lastly, occasionally keeping away from social media platforms to avert addiction and eliminate distraction causing lack of productivity.
The time off from work needn’t have to be a full vacation; it can be a walk, or simply staycation. The idea is to find out what works well for oneself since one-size-fits-all is not always the wisest approach!