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4 Strategies on Dealing with Work Burnout

Working from home has allowed us to from home...all of the time. The kids are in bed and the computer is in the kitchen, so you check emails at 9:00pm and all of the sudden an hour has passed. You blew off working out, ate a bag of chips for dinner and drank two glasses of wine to “unwind.”

Whether you’re a small business owner or an employee in a 10,000 person company, it’s important to take control of your life and your day:

1. Write Down Three Important Things, Adding "Because": We know you have 100 things to accomplish every day, but write down the three most important things you need to accomplish each day that help you reach your goals. Whether it’s having that uncomfortable conversation with a co-worker, or starting a complex report, write it down and here's my new trick. Add "because" right after it and the reason it's important. For instance, "Talk to Steve about his performance because it will help him improve, increase our team's productivity and help me sleep better."

2. Block Your Day: If it’s not on the calendar, it won’t get done. I put everything on my calendar with the proper time allotted. Heck, during this pandemic I’ve even put “shower” on my calendar. Point is, put it down at the best time of day where you’ll know you’ll get it done. Have back-to-back meetings all day? Then re-think accepting too many meetings so you can get your important work done.

3. Take Breaks: Your brain can only take so much. Working on a proposal for three straight hours is not very productive. Block 90 minutes to do the draft, take a brisk walk around the block, then come back and edit it. Got PowerPoint fatigue? Set a timer for 60 minutes, then break and do a quick Sun Salutation. Note: Checking social media is NOT a brain break.

4. Let Your Emotions Be: This is an uncertain time in our lives and a there is a lot of negativity in the world. If you need to vent, call a friend (or me!) Hold back on the extra alcohol (yes, that’s difficult.) Watch your coffee intake, stay away from the news, hop off the social media scrollercoaster, and listen to a meditation app for 5 minutes a day.

Above all, be true to your values, take care of yourself first, be present with your family, be kind to strangers, catch up with old friends via Zoom and know that things will change in the future.

This blog was inspired by Adam Markel during his interview on the How To Be Awesome At Your Job Podcast, How To Beat Burnout and Restore Resilience

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