One of the biggest remote work challenges is having a work-life balance. With all your work responsibilities existing in the same confines as your personal space, how do you navigate the blurry lines between work and home?
At the office, once you step out of the building, you are leaving work behind. For some of us, the routine of commuting away from the office – further and further away from work – helps us to stop thinking about work.
But when you work from home, it’s not so easy to peel away from work. Such a situation is especially so for business owners and entrepreneurs.
When does the workday end?
Remote working requires some planning and iterating until you find out what works for you. As an entrepreneur, you might find it unnecessary to end your workday, because after all, work seems to be never-ending.
However, finding a work shutdown ritual that works for you goes a long way in learning how to switch off from work and preventing burnout.
Here are 5 suggestions so you can create your shutdown routine and leave work at work.
#1 Set Up A Consistent Appointment At The End Of The Work Day
It can be something as simple as going for a run or making dinner. If it’s tough to stop when the clock strikes, make plans with someone so you’d be in a hurry to log off.
It’ll help to keep a firm time for ending your workday. Otherwise, completing just one more task will lead to another and the next thing you know, it’s way past dinner time. As much as entrepreneurs glorify productivity, one’s physical and mental health needs are as important. Enforcing small but important rules like ending your workday on time prevents overworking and potential burnout.
#2 Tidy Up Your Physical And Digital Workspace
Take a moment to declutter your work area. Yes, that includes the multiple Google tabs and applications opened on your laptop too. Our workplace environment has a significant effect on the way we work. Cluttered spaces can influence our stress and anxiety levels, so it’ll do some good to clean up the mess. The routine of tidying up can also send signals to your brain that work has ended, much like how our commute home indicates we have ended work.
Plus, it’s much more pleasant to begin work in a clean, tidy environment the next day.
#3 Sign Off For The Day
Even as a business owner, you need not be on standby all the time. Sure, for peak periods, you might want to reply instantaneously. But on other days, consider signing off at the end of the day. Let your employees know that you are done for the day. After informing your employees, you should unwind for the night. That’ll give your workers the impression that you value work-life balance too, so it’s a win-win move you can implement to end the day.
#4 Review Your To-Done, What You Have Put Off
Some of us are addicted to being busy. With remote working, more time is freed up from commuting and office distractions, so you expect yourself to get more work done. But such a mentality might only drag out your workdays because the tasks get overwhelming and frustrate you because it leaves the to-do list unchecked.
Instead, use the end of the day to review your completed tasks and remind yourself of the progress you have clocked. It can serve as an end-of-day ritual for you, helping you stay motivated and ending the day on a good note.
#5 Untangle Your Mind With A Brain Dump
In the last fifteen minutes of your workday, your mind might be racing with ideas and things to do. You might even get a sense of dread because of all the tasks that are yet to be done, or things that you have put off.
Do a brain dump. On a notebook, write down all of the thoughts running through your head. Scribbling it all out gives your brain a sense of clearing space so that you don’t mentally review all the things you have to do again at night. It can be a rough to-do list that you’ll review the next morning, the point is to stop thinking about work until it’s the right time to focus on it again.
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