Whether you work full-time or part-time, remotely or from the office, chances are you know a thing or two about feeling exhausted at work.
We all have busy lives: juggling families, friends, social lives, careers, self-care, and never-ending life admin can leave us feeling tired out, stressed out, and ready for a way out. And while our working lives have become somewhat more accommodating in recent years (generally speaking), we’re still subject to a great deal of pressure.
Pressure to perform. Pressure to care for our wellbeing. Pressure to have it all.
It’s exhausting, and it doesn’t seem to matter where you work from.
Home Vs. Office: Who’s More Tired?
Both exhausting in their own right, the battle between home and office has raged since the beginning of the pandemic.
When the lockdown first hit, many of us rejoiced at being able to bypass the daily commute in favour of working in our comfies and enjoying a lie-in (unless you’re a parent – but more on that later). But home-working comes with its own form of exhaustion.
Being able to log-on at any given time has served to dissolve the precious divide between work life, and home life. Over the past few years, the two have melded together to create a tiring blur that results in us Always. Being. On.
Instead of logging off at the end of the day to make sure we don’t miss our train, we lose track of time, send emails long into the evening, jump online when we remember something at the weekend, and make ourselves contactable at all hours of the day. There’s nowhere to escape, and it makes it incredibly hard to switch off – which leaves us more exhausted than ever.
That said, after getting used to working from the comfort of our homes since Covid first hit, travelling to and fro is proving exhausting for many – as is having to adapt to the social buzz, sights and sounds of the office once more.
In all, it’s been an incredibly tiring few years in more ways than one.
So what can you do about it?
Top Tips for Beating Exhaustion at Work
Work fatigue is a tiring mix of physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion that sleep alone can’t remedy. When you’re experiencing exhaustion at work, it impacts your performance: affecting your ability to focus, making it more difficult to concentrate, and lowering your motivation levels.
If you’re looking for ways to beat work fatigue, or you want to know how to have more energy at work, take a look at our suggestions below.
- Create (and maintain) boundaries: Whether that’s leaving the office on time or logging off on time, you owe it to yourself to have a hard stop to the working day. And because it’s even more difficult to unplug when working remotely, be sure to set yourself an email curfew – this should include disabling notifications so you’re not drawn in.
- Have an end-of-day ritual: If you struggle to make the switch between home and work, start a daily ritual that denotes the divide between the two. That could be going for a walk, trying out a new recipe, meditating, or doing some exercise. Stick to this new routine consistently at the end of every working day, until it becomes habit.
- Value yourself: You are not obliged to be contactable at all hours of the day and night. You need rest, and you absolutely deserve it. Taking time to focus on self-care – whether that’s a relaxing bath, an hour spent with a good book, or going out with friends – will help you to feel far more energetic at work.
- Focus on healthy habits: No matter how you approach your working day, you’re going to feel exhausted if you’re not taking good care of yourself. You’ve heard it all before, but getting plenty of rest, staying hydrated, maintaining a balanced diet, enjoying regular exercise, and spending time in nature will all help to give you a massive energy boost – in and out of work.
The Plight of the Working Parent
Being a working parent is a whole different kettle of fish, isn’t it?
Your days (and nights) aren’t really in your control when you’ve got kids to care for, worry over, organise and plan for. You feel tired pretty much all of the time, and concentrating on work after a sleepless night can feel like a challenge too far.
As well as following the tips above, it’s even more important for you to create moments of calm. Meditation can really help you to reclaim your focus when you’re tired out and stressed out – as can going for a solitary walk outside, journaling, or practising yoga.
When you’re a parent, you simply have to grab these moments when you can: meditate at your desk; take a lunchtime stroll; book a yoga class when the kids are at football/with grandparents/on a play date. We neglect ourselves far too often, and accept exhaustion as part of the job – but we owe it to ourselves (and our kids) to take really good care of ourselves. At work. At home. Throughout our busy lives.
If you need a little more guidance on how to do that, take a look at our incredibly vast range of wellbeing resources. There really is something for everyone.
Go on, you deserve it.