Mandy Kloppers

How to Avoid Work Burnout and Stay Motivated

Work burnout can be crippling to your productivity and happiness and it’s more common than you may think. Whether you experience it in the office or at home, work burnout can be caused by both internal and external factors, so it’s important to stay mindful of how you handle them on both fronts. Luckily, there are plenty of things you can do to help alleviate the pressure that comes with day-to-day life.

Six Ways to Beat Burnout

Navigating work burnout begins with having a strategy to get work done while enjoying a healthy work-life balance. Here are six ways to help avoid work burnout and stay motivated no matter what your job looks like:

1. Set Daily Goals

One way to combat work burnout is by setting goals for your day. Research shows that when we complete small goals throughout a day, it keeps us motivated and feeling good about our overall progress. To avoid burning out from work, set realistic expectations for how much you can get done in a day, and schedule breaks for yourself during slow times at work.

Likewise, try tackling most of the to-do list before the end of your workday or workweek. This will help keep stress levels down so you don’t start every weekend with a list of things you didn’t finish at work that week.

2. Change Your Routine

If you spend all day working on the same type of task, your brain is eventually going to start longing for a change. Push yourself into new territory by trying something outside of your normal routine—even if it’s just minor adjustments like taking lunch away from your desk or simply introducing new methods into your workflow. Each time you take on a little challenge and beat it, it will make you feel accomplished, motivated, and energized.

3. Learn Something New

Learning new skills and tricks at work can give you a greater level of satisfaction, even if you’re already well-versed in your day-to-day responsibilities. Not only does it help in case there’s an emergency and someone isn’t available who knows what they’re doing, but it can also enhance your status within your department. Moreover, if you want to know more about how your industry works or even take on new roles at some point, learning new skills is a great way to do that.

4. Challenge Yourself

It’s easy to get bored with a task or job, but too much unchallenging work will make you feel like you’re not being productive. One way around that is to stretch yourself and attempt more challenging projects. If your job description doesn’t offer many opportunities for personal growth, challenge yourself by volunteering for projects outside of your role. The idea is that if you expand what you do daily, it will be more interesting and you won’t feel burnt out.

5. Go on Vacation

Going on vacation is key to balancing your professional and personal life and keeping burnout at bay. Research shows that work burnout stems from too much time at your desk and not enough in-person socialization with other people. If you look at lifestyle business examples, you’ll see that the key to avoiding burnout is finding ways to challenge the traditional 9-5 workweek.

By building a lifestyle that values both times off and time at work, you’ll be able to keep burnout to a minimum. Remember, vacation doesn’t have to mean days spent lounging on a beach or sightseeing, sometimes all it takes is to take one day or morning a week off to spend time enjoying yourself.

6. Take Mini-Breaks Throughout the Day

At times, you might feel overwhelmed by all that’s on your plate at work. To keep burnout at bay, take a few moments throughout your day for some quick mini-breaks. Go for a short walk or run, do some stretches, call a friend—anything that will give you time away from your desk and computer. When it comes to avoiding work burnout, being kinder to yourself is a big part of it—so don’t push yourself too hard when trying to stay motivated.

If you are working in an work from home environment, make sure to cultivate relationships with your coworkers. Speaking to those that you work with can help reduce your burnout, and help you find new ways to be productive at work. You can also ask them to have a conversation about productivity and motivation. Finding out how others avoid burnout and stay productive can give you ideas on how you can as well. 

Prevent Work Burnout

If you don’t learn how to deal with it, work burnout can destroy not only your productivity but also your mental and physical health. It is something that happens to all of us, especially when our tasks are repetitive or we spend many hours at work. Thankfully, we can reset our motivation and stay on task. Keep these strategies in mind to prevent burnout and keep motivated in your workplace.

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