Working from home may be the most productive work model going, but it comes with a heightened risk of employee burnout. First there’s the issue of over-engagement: remote employees work longer hours and take fewer breaks than their office peers. Then there are self-management stresses: with no one around, home workers are individually responsible for regulating their performance and staying on-task.
But for those working from home in lockdown as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, there are even more pressures to consider. Once you add in the uncertainties of the current global situation, anxiety for family and friends, and the emotional toll of social isolation, a huge proportion of the global workforce seems headed for certain burnout (and that’s in addition to essential workers on the front lines).
So what can you do to stay afloat? By staying conscious of how it’s affecting you and introducing measures to boost your resilience. Here are just a few burnout prevention tips for home workers – as recommended by the remote workers of Memory.
Know what causes remote burnout
Understanding what causes remote employee burnout is essential an essential place to start. It helps you protect against them and recognize any burnout signs early, so you can limit their damage. While we’ve already laid out the main work burnout causes here, the Coronavirus pandemic has brought a unique set of its own to the table, including:
a lack of structure or control from making the remote transition overnight
Working in a chaotic working environment (particularly if you’re a remote parent)
Working too much and not mentally disengaging from work
Feeling your work isn’t visible or recognized
Taking on too many responsibilities
Firefighting unprecedented situations, sometimes singlehandedly
Lacking meaningful daily connection
Losing connection and rapport with colleagues
Losing purpose in your work as a “non-essential worker”
Insecurity around the future of your job
Poor mental health as a result of lockdown
Emotional stress and anxiety for loved ones
Set clear boundaries
Help to keep professional and personal time separate, and bring clear direction to your work by implementing the following:
Set daily working hours — knowing exactly when your work day ends
Schedule regular breaks and avoid working intensely for more than 90 minutes at a time
Be conscious about how you use your breaks – don’t fill them with new stresses or passive interactions