As the calendar turns to a new year, the desire for a fresh start and renewed hope is prevalent among many employees.
However, recent research indicates that nearly half of Brits are at risk of burnout, underscoring the importance of prioritising work-life balance and mental health as individuals return to the office in January.
To assist workers in navigating these challenges, flexible office space provider Instant Offices has shared five valuable tips aimed at preventing burnout and reducing feelings of overwhelm in the workplace.
- Communicate Openly with Your Manager: In order to foster a supportive work environment, it is crucial to be transparent about your workload and stress levels. Schedule a meeting with your manager to discuss concerns, communicate deadlines, and outline any challenges you are facing. A supportive manager can assist in prioritising tasks, delegating responsibilities, or providing additional resources to alleviate pressure.
- Set Realistic Goals and Prioritise Tasks: Break down tasks into manageable steps and establish realistic goals. Prioritise workload based on deadlines and importance, avoiding overcommitting by learning to say no when necessary. A clear plan and focus on achievable objectives can help prevent feelings of being overwhelmed.
- Take Regular Breaks: Recharging throughout the day is essential. Step away from your desk, engage in short walks, or practice deep breathing exercises. Prioritise self-care by ensuring adequate sleep, regular exercise, and activities that bring joy, contributing to increased resilience against burnout.
- Establish Work-Life Boundaries: Clearly define boundaries between work and personal life. Resist the urge to check work emails during non-working hours and avoid bringing work home regularly. Setting limits on work hours creates a healthier work-life balance, reducing the risk of burnout. Allocate time for hobbies, family, and relaxation to recharge energy.
- Practice Mindfulness and Stress Reduction Techniques: Integrate mindfulness and stress reduction techniques into your daily routine. Dedicate a few minutes each day to activities like meditation, deep breathing exercises, or mindfulness practices. These techniques enhance present-moment awareness, stress management, and overall well-being, building resilience to navigate workplace challenges effectively.
Lucinda Pullinger, Global Head of HR at Instant Offices, highlights the importance of vigilance throughout the year, noting, “While January is one of the toughest times of the year for career blues in the UK, it is especially important to look out for signs of burnout later in the year as well. Stress and exhaustion at work impact employees of all ages around the world, and at every level of the career ladder. Similar to imposter syndrome, high achievers and perfectionists are particularly susceptible to burning themselves out.”
As individuals embark on the challenges of the new year, incorporating these tips into their daily routine can contribute to a healthier and more sustainable work-life balance, mitigating the risk of burnout.
Amelia Brand is the Editor for HRreview, and host of the HR in Review podcast series. With a Master’s degree in Legal and Political Theory, her particular interests within HR include employment law, DE&I, and wellbeing within the workplace. Prior to working with HRreview, Amelia was Sub-Editor of a magazine, and Editor of the Environmental Justice Project at the University College London, writing and overseeing articles into UCL’s weekly newsletter. Her previous academic work has focused on philosophy, politics and law, with a special focus on how artificial intelligence will feature in the future.