The fallout of the pandemic has resulted in working flexibly becoming our ‘norm,’ with many of us now being attracted to a job by the prospect of remote working. In fact, increased job flexibility is a key deciding factor for 1 in 3 workers in the UK. However, the flexible benefits associated with remote working continue to come with a growing side order of work life ‘burn out’ for many – particularly as we continue to navigate the effects of an economic crisis, rise in redundancies, and future uncertainty.
Studies show that as many as 84% of workers admit to feeling burnt out from working from home. In most cases this is due to workers feeling unable to separate home from work life, describing feeling pressured to work harder at home than in the office.
As a result, businesses have begun to place an emphasis on adapting their culture to bring wellbeing back into the focus of working life. With this in mind, we’ve put together 10 ways to help you and your teams restore a healthy work life balance whilst working flexible and in particular, primarily remote working.
- Create a working space suited to your style
This is a unique opportunity to create your ideal working space, tailored to your needs. Whether you have an office desk, or like to work at the breakfast table, choose a set up that energises and motivates you to work.
- Set your own office hours (and try to stick to them)!
One of the most common pitfalls reported by workers is losing track of time being sat in the same spot. With no evening commute home, time seems to run away with us and we end up finishing later than intended. Set an alarm to notify you when your working day is done and close your laptop to signify the end to your day.
- Give yourself a positive reason to finish on time
Working from home often gives us the excuse to just finish one last thing, or just send that one last email. Making plans with friends, family, or just for yourself will help implement finishing times and give you important self-care time.
- Avoid checking emails after work
A key habit reported by workers is feeling the need to respond to non-urgent emails after hours. It can make you feel like you are always working and take away from your down time. In reality, unless it is an emergency, there is rarely an email that cannot wait until the next day.
- Take breaks
It sounds obvious, but working from home can often make us forget to take time away from our computers. The absence of the coffee machine or canteen is not an excuse to not take breaks when you need them. This will lower stress and increase your productivity.
- Block out time to achieve goals
Again, this sounds like a standard practice, but working from home can lead us to be a little less structured as the days seem to roll into one. Blocking out time will help focus on tasks to get the crucial work done.
- Don’t feel you must always say ‘yes’
Reports show that working from home increases our desire to say ‘yes’ to more requests from our team. Saying yes to everything detracts from achieving your own goals and so making sure you are able to also say ‘no’ is important to prevent you from getting over loaded.
- Accept that you won’t get it right every time
Striking a good work life balance can be hard, especially if you are new to working from home. You won’t get the balance right every time and that is ok. Make your expectations realistic to your personal circumstances so you aren’t feeling pressured to have it perfect every time.
- Communication is key
Not all of us thrive as well when working alone and it’s easy to feel isolated and get a little caught up in feeling overwhelmed. Talk to your team throughout the day to get that human interaction and keep in touch with your manager to ensure you are communicating how you are feeling and what you need.
- Replace the commute time with something that increases your energy
Many workers have admitted to checking emails or starting work as soon as they wake up. With no commute to the office, your energy and motivation levels can be increased by doing something to replace commute time. This could be morning yoga, a walk, or cooking a delicious breakfast.
Are you looking at how your business culture can best support your employees? Our team of Organisational Change and HR Services experts are on hand to support you and your teams during times of change. Complete the contact form so we can get in touch, or call us on 01491 414010.