Our days can be filled with chaos and never ending to-dos right from the moment we wake up in the morning. It’s difficult to pull yourself away from everything because there is always something that needs to be done or someone that needs your help.
Think about it:
Do you check your emails the moment you wake up every morning?
Do you skip breakfast so that you can get the kids out the door and on time for school?
Do you each lunch at your desk every day to catch up on a few extra tasks?
Do you get less than 8 hours of sleep because you’re trying to cram as much into your day as possible?
You’ve probably answered yes to at least one of these questions. While having a “go, go, go” attitude can help you be more productive in the short term, it’s not sustainable for the long term. Burnout should be a serious concern for everyone, but it’s not.
Life can be overwhelming and trying to juggle it all is tough. It also doesn’t help that we create demanding schedules for ourselves when it’s not necessary. Productivity is tricky because it requires two things to be successful – time and energy. While we can’t increase the number of hours in a day, we can considerably increase our energy by doing the simplest things.
Log Off, Completely
With the power of technology these days, we are always connected. Sometimes, it’s difficult to ignore those emails, texts, or tweets when your phone is buzzing or blinking every 15 minutes. However, it’s important to remember to give your brain a break every now and then. The world isn’t going to end if you don’t know what your best friend is making for dinner. While it’s important to be in the loop with work, friends and family, take some time to completely disconnect and relax a little bit.
Sleep More, Eat Right
The number one reason why people feel tired and groggy throughout the day is because they don’t sleep enough. Sleeping for 7-8 hours every night may seem like the most impossible thing in the world but it’s important. You’ll be more alert and on top of your game during the day, which equals more productivity. It is also important to remember to eat right. Don’t skip meals (and no, a cup of coffee doesn’t count as breakfast). Your body and brain will thank you for it.
Schedule A Break
The idea of a vacation might seem like a far-off luxury but it shouldn’t be. Scheduling extended time off to relax, rest, and recharge is essential. You don’t have to necessarily go away to some exotic location for it to be considered a vacation. Plan a staycation – spend time with family and friends and do touristy activities in your area. And don’t check your emails. Give your mind some time off from work.
More and more companies are realizing the importance of work life balance and mental health with the implementation of flexible personal time off and subsidizing gym memberships and other activities. While working more may seem more productive, it really isn’t if your body and mind aren’t cooperating. Don’t forget that much needed R & R every once in a while.