How to avoid burnout working from home

How to avoid burnout

Do you ever feel you are constantly on video conferencing calls and checking your email all day? With many of us working at home, the separation between work and home life has started to fade. As our homes become our permanent offices it is very easy to let work creep into everything we do. This can have unhealthy consequences and lead to burnout in the long run. That is why setting proper boundaries and taking advantage of weekends is very important.

In the right conditions, working from home can be a great way to maximize work efficiency and spend quality time with the family. However, to do that, you have to either be the type of person who naturally can balance the demands of life equally or be the person who recognizes that they need a little structure in their life. The point of this article is not to say you can never answer an email after normal work hours or take a call on the weekends. The intent is to help you find a way to make working from home balance with both your personal life and work life.


Sometimes people have to work or respond to emails at odd times because they have small kids they have to attend to. This is okay. That said, doing your best to turn your phone off, especially in the evenings before you go to bed can be a healthy practice. It is all about recharging your batteries so you can go back to it the next day. You can do this by simply avoiding scheduling any meetings or work in the evenings or on the weekends.

Remember that domestic responsibilities need to be scheduled just as much as professional responsibilities. With many of us not just working from home but confided to our homes. All of these things can lead to more stress and anxiety. The stats don’t lie either. A little less than half of Americans in a recent survey said they feel burned out or emotionally drained from work. Even worse, almost a fourth indicated they felt depressed due to work and home life balance.

Women suffer more

Women are more likely and vulnerable to suffer from burnout than men. This is because women unfairly take on more of the burden of housekeeping and childcare in the home opposed to men. All of this would be on top of their professional responsibilities. This means so much more than them just being stretched thin and over-worked. Many women will come down with physical symptoms like sleep apnea, anxiety, and vitamin deficiency. For those men out there, don’t make your wife take double-shifts caring for the home and doing their jobs. For those women out there, you are doing great, and please speak up if you are feeling overwhelmed.

Don’t compare yourself

In the day and age of social media, it is very easy to start comparing your life situation to your friends, family, and co-workers. It might seem that they all have everything together and are doing great, which can make you feel worse. We all know everyone is dealing with their problems even if they don’t’ show it. A big piece of having good mental health is by not wasting time following other people’s lives and comparing yourself. Make sure you are focused on your own life and what you can accomplish every day. Happiness is almost always, right in front of you. The race is long, and in the end, it’s only with yourself.

Self-care is the right care

A big part of that healthy mental and physical state is taking time to devote to yourself. You don’t need to go to a spa or anything crazy. Getting plenty of sleep, staying hydrated, and exercising regularly are the most crucial self-care areas you should focus on. Staying in touch with family and friends with regular meaningful communications is also important. If you have an interest in practicing meditation and mindfulness these concepts are also encouraged.

Mix-up your routine

Structure is a good thing. Especially when balancing work and personal life. However, we can all benefit from changing small things up every day, so our schedule doesn’t become repetitive. If you have a coffee every morning as you get going, maybe try substituting that for tea. Instead of turning on Netflix every evening, pick up a book, and lose yourself in the pages. Another great idea is to surprise a friend or colleague you haven’t spoken to in a while with a phone call to catch up.

This can be a great time to start fun family traditions or activities. You are only limited by your creativity. You could do something fun like going on a bike ride and letting your kid guide the way. Or maybe let your kids cook dinner one night.

Ask for help if you need it

We are all under a lot of stress right now trying to manage work and family life. When it comes to work, many of our companies are facing economic issues which can be a risk to our jobs, pay, and career potential. It is this type of scenario that can lead people to work extra-hard to show their worth so they can keep their job. It can also lead people to not ask for help or complain.

It might be difficult to see but by overworking yourself and not taking a break you are going to decrease your productivity. This is when burnout happens which is also unproductive for you and your employer. Remember to disconnect and recharge. If you need to have a conversation with your manager or employer about the stress you are under and your intent to do good work, do so. They will appreciate your openness and willingness.

Burnout bottom line

Being paralyzed with stress is what brings on burnout and if you are not careful it could be your downfall. Life is all about progress and managing our responsibilities. If you want to continue making progress in your personal and professional life remember that sometimes you need to slow down to go fast. Take a deep breath and don’t become overwhelmed with your situation. During this time, focus on tackling large meaningful goals, not small tasks. If you are feeling too much pressure to perform, reach out for help.