5 Tips to Avoid Burnout and Stay Productive While Working Remotely

Remember the feeling when you used to drag your feet every day to work and enduring that long commute, wishfully thinking of working remotely to spend more time with your family and do the things you love?

Now, the tables have turned. Over a year ago people were asked to self-quarantine, and yet, you find yourself too comfortable, too distracted, or less engaged working from home, making it difficult to stay productive.

Technology is great for making working from home possible, but humans are social creatures who crave growth, learning, acceptance, socialization, and productivity. If one aspect of life is lacking, the rest will be affected. Don’t feel bad if, despite best efforts, nothing is contributing to your productivity bank.

Working from home is an ideal setup, but it is not for everyone. You are forced to carve out your “office space” at home and social interactions at work shifted to digital devices. In the office, somebody can check on you; at home, you’re on your own and it’s easy to get sidetracked. Cut yourself some slack and allow yourself to be unproductive for a bit because if you resist, you may find it hard to concentrate and, over time, feel burned out.

Apart from discipline, what does it take to achieve work-life balance and make working from home manageable? Make technology work for you. Work smart and approach things with human sensibility. You’re not born to work like a robot, but that’s the reason why you have all these tools to help systematize the way you work. These habits might be able to help your productivity peak.

1) Habitually set your mind to work during your peak time – Each of us has different time and productivity levels. You just have to find that sweet spot when you are most motivated to work. You can personally download and use productivity and project management tools to track your time spent doing tasks and monitor what’s left on your to-do list.

You may have already been using them when you were in an office, but if you find yourself getting overwhelmed now is your chance to personally try the tools you think can help boost your productivity. You do you.

2) Set meeting agendas and team huddles during your off-peak energy – Virtual meetings with clients are like actual meetings; they can be draining when it exceeds more than an hour. The same goes for daily or weekly team huddles for project updates. Have you noticed you can’t think properly after a long meeting? That’s because the energy you are supposed to spend doing productive work already went into the meeting.

One of the perks of being a remote worker is you have control of your time and energy. Communicate with your team or your client about when to have a call with them. If they agree at your preferred time, lucky you. If not, put a time cap and agenda for every call to make every minute count.

3) Entertain yourself – Once you find your energy drooping low, humor yourself by watching short, entertaining videos or mindlessly browsing for content that makes you feel happy and relaxed. If you want to make your downtime equally productive, you can opt to listen to podcasts to stimulate your mind and learn new things. Do yourself a favor—to prevent burnout, take care of your well-being.

4) Ask for team support – One of the downsides of remote work is that it can get lonely and frustrating, especially if you are having a hard time and no one can immediately come to your aid. You are not alone. You can communicate with your team about your progress and hurdles. Many remote workers find refuge in online community groups where they feel safe sharing and raising questions if the former falls short of their expectations.

A supportive team will always have your back—work-related or not. Be open and candid about your struggles, and you just might find someone in the group who can relate to your situation.

5) Meditate before and after your work – Always take time to meditate on the things you are grateful for and the things you are looking forward to. This will help ease the anxiety you may be feeling and the worries you may have.

The power of meditation can help boost your productive energy before you start working or energize you to do things you love that are not work-related. Be mentally and emotionally aware of what you are thinking. If you are thinking negative thoughts, you are attracting negative energy. If you feel overwhelmed while working, stop for a bit and empty your mind.

Powering through work-from-home woes

There’s no perfect lifestyle setup that can make you achieve work-life balance. There are tons of remote productivity tips; it’s a matter of finding a system that works best for you. Be accountable, but check yourself and take care of your well-being to prevent burnout. When you are functional, you are happy, content, and productive. And that is what matters.

Author Bio:

Jo-Anne is an Online PR Specialist for Spiralytics. She aspires to contribute something good to Digital Media someday. During her free time, Jo likes to watch films & series about anything; as long as it’s not a horror movie, she’s good. She also likes to clean all the time; no wonder Monica Geller is her favorite in Friends.