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Jordan’s 4 tips to managing your workload and avoiding burnout when you’re self employed or work remotely

Something becoming more and more prominent in this world is people overloading themselves and burning out in their day to day jobs. One of the most important things you need to pay attention to, and spend time on, is how you manage your workload and structure your day to minimise any consequences of overworking or grinding yourself down.

Structure your day

Structuring your day is something that many people underestimate the power of and overlook, and if I am being honest, it is something that I have struggled with. Bringing more structure into my day is something that one of my best friends actually really got me into. That being said, it has had an incredibly large impact on my life and also a lot of those close around me. 

Structuring your day basically involves getting yourself a daily routine or schedule that you hold yourself to. The way I like to structure my day is by getting up, writing my to-do list for the day while I get ready and then I head out to the gym. Starting your day with a form of physical exercise can work wonders at helping relax your mind and getting you focussed so you can perform at your best and most efficiently. 

Giving yourself a schedule to follow on a daily basis may seem like a very boring way to live your life, trust me I thought the same way – but the number of pros to this severely outweigh the number of cons. For example, if you schedule in the time that you are planning to work throughout the day you can be more accountable and productive, not only that; you can adjust your schedule / hours you work to something that is more comfortable and is not going to burn you out. 

Structuring your day really helps in creating an efficient daily routine which helps you be more effective in your place of work but also allows you to optimise your day to avoid burning out and ultimately not enjoying day to day life all that much.

Break bigger tasks up into smaller tasks

If you are like me then you start your day by setting out a to-do-list and by the time you are done setting that out, it looks very daunting and you feel like throwing in the towel before your day even begins. I know this happens more than we are all willing to admit. One of the best ways to combat this issue is to effectively break up tasks into smaller bite sized pieces that are more digestible at first glance. 

What I mean by this is if you go ahead and write on your to-do-list that you need to “Build a website for Charlie’s Chocolate Factory” – then when you look at that mid day you’re gonna have an “Oh s***” moment and it is going to stress you out. So my advice to you is to break that larger task up into smaller bite sized tasks. So for instance instead of writing “Build a website for Charlie’s Chocolate Factory” you can write 20 smaller tasks of “Build out the header component for Charlie’s web build”, “Build out the about us page for Charlies web build” and so on, so forth. This way you are still accomplishing the large task at hand, just in smaller, more digestible pieces. 

The good thing about this technique is that not only does it make your daily tasks more digestible but it helps with that gratification we are all after. As soon as you tick something off your to-do-list you are feeling great, you are feeling amped and you are feeling accomplished. The more often you can do that throughout the day the better as it keeps you motivated and keeps your head in the game for the rest of the day. Once again, helping improve your productivity and efficiency.

Help yourself & reward yourself

This method is one that requires you to take a bit more action and be a bit more practical. When I say help yourself, I am referring to doing things on a regular basis that are going to help your mindset and your mental health, because at the end of the day this is where the majority of the work needs to be done in order for you to perform well in your day to day work. 

In order to improve your mental health and mindset you need to work at it and take actionable steps to improve it. Some examples of actionable things you can do that could potentially help your mindset and mental state is doing physical exercise… Feeling overwhelmed, go for a run or even just go for a walk around the block. Get some fresh air in you and take a bit of a load off. There’s many other things you can do such as meditation, reading, listening to binaural beats and much, much more. The main thing here is that you are taking action and are wanting to help yourself! 

Moving forward, along with helping yourself, you want to ensure that you are rewarding yourself for a job well done. Whether that is allowing yourself to not work all weekend and hanging out with friends and family or it is buying yourself a new pair of shoes. It is important that we reward ourselves for accomplishing things, small or large.

Take frequent breaks

Something that I have been recently brought into, is taking small 5 minutes breaks while working. This is something that is incredibly beneficial especially if you are in a line of work like the frankworks team where you are staring at a computer all hours of the day. Breaking your work up and walking away for 5 minutes to grab yourself some fresh air can have a huge impact on helping you avoid burning out. 

If you feel like you are getting to the stage in the day where you can’t focus or can’t seem to get something right – step away, grab a glass of water and go for a short five minute walk in some fresh air. Come back and I am sure you will be feeling more refreshed and revived to keep pushing on through with your work.

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