Remote work has been recognized for the benefits it offers to many people, however, it can be susceptible to burnout. Working from home, and possibly alone for weeks or months on end can lead to a routine that while productive at the beginning, can slowly lead to monotony and boredom. To prevent that from happening, there are a few things you can do. Consider trying these methods to change up your workday.
Change Your Location
Your environment can have a significant impact on your productivity. After months or even years of sitting in the same location within our home, your work can go from quality to sub-par without finding a variety of ways to create subtle differences during your workday. Perhaps it’s time for you to change your work location from a room in your house to a nearby coffee shop or coworking space. That way you can get into a routine of leaving the house and seeing other people aside from your household members.
Additionally, look into ways of changing your home workspace. Maybe you can switch out your chair or desk for something more ergonomic such as a standing desk. If you’re looking for minor solutions, a new paint job or plant can liven up a space in an unexpected way. Even switching around the furniture or placement of everything on your desk can make things interesting and fresh for you.
Adjust Your Schedule
If your employer allows you to create your own working schedule, take advantage of it! If you’re an early bird, get up and complete your eight hours early to enjoy the rest of the afternoon. Or if you’re more of a night owl, get some extra sleep in and then get to work. Maybe neither of those options sounds ideal for you, and some days you want to switch it up. Don’t be afraid to toss your schedule around a bit if it means you can be more productive if your manager allows it. Take a look at weekly meetings and deliverables to make a schedule based on slow and busy times. That way you can adhere to a more flexible work arrangement where you have time to step outside for a walk or grab lunch outside the house.
With increased flexibility in your work hours, you’ll have more time to fit into personal pursuits. Work-life balance has been thrown off-kilter in many remote employees’ lives, so changing your schedule will help get some of that stability back into your life. It can be hard to change your hours if you do not have the flexibility to do so, but even starting work an hour early or later is one way to execute this change.
Get Up and Move
Physical activity is good for your overall health and wellbeing. It can be easy to just sit at your desk all day to try to finish a project, but getting up and moving around helps you take a breather. Research shows that it’s not good for you to sit and stare at a screen for hours on end every day. As one Harvard Health article says, “Even if you dedicate at least 30 minutes a day to structured exercise (such as brisk walking, cycling, or swimming), it’s still important to get up and move for at least a few minutes, many times throughout the day.”
A short stroll outside during the day will expose you to fresh air, get your body moving, and you away from technology. A brief walk has been shown to help clear your head and let you work through a problem. If you don’t have the time to get up and move, make healthier changes to your workspace. Again, if you want to change up your furniture, look for posture-improving options. Switching to a standing desk or exercise ball chair can improve your posture which is important to overall health. Scheduling reminders in your calendar is one way to ensure that you get up regularly.
Set Up More In-Person Meetings
It might have been a while since you’ve seen your co-workers in person. So to combat the Zoom Fatigue, schedule some in-person meetings. It can be hard to have an in-person event if your co-workers are spread out, however, you can start planning a gathering a few months in advance to give everyone time to book their travel. Don’t forget to carve out some time for fun team bonding activities as well! Set up something to close or start the day off to break the ice and let everyone relax after working for so long.
If you work by yourself and run your own business, take the time to connect with friends and family. Getting away from the daily grind to meet with your people will give you a well-deserved break. It’s a chance for you to talk through work-related problems too. Depending on who you meet with, they can provide you with insights that can help you through a roadblock or provide a breakthrough.
Take a Break from Work
Getting up to move around or schedule in-person meetings are great ways to take breaks during your workday, but what about taking an actual vacation? Sometimes there is no ideal time to check out from work to head out on a personal trip, but that shouldn’t stop you because it’s good for you. Signing off for a few days lets you completely turn off and reset yourself.
It’s also a chance for you to get out of your at-home office. Even if you opt for a vacation at home, or a “staycation”, you won’t be sitting at your desk. Instead, you’ll be moving around your home tackling other projects or engaging in fun activities. But, going on an actual trip, and putting your work on pause may give you the change of routine you need to feel refreshed and re-energized outside of the house. To make sure you’re not receiving any notifications, log off from your work email and silence message alerts to ensure you get a vacation without distractions.
Remote work has a big appeal for many people thanks to many factors. But after working at home for an extended period of time, fatigue can set in, and it might be necessary to switch up your routine to prevent burnout. Executing any of the ideas mentioned above can help improve your workday and productivity.
Author Bio: Brian Thomas is a contributor to Enlightened Digital. He enjoys reading and researching tech and business. When he’s not looking into the latest trends, you can find him out cycling.