How to switch off from work over the holidays

How to switch off from work over the holidays

 18 Dec 2020

This year more than any other it is vital to be able to switch off, even if only for a couple of days, to rest and recharge our batteries. But this year it will also be much harder to do. The line between work and home has become increasingly blurred. So many of us no longer commute into the office and our home has become our new workplace with the temptation to work for longer and check emails out of hours.

It is essential to switch off to make sure that we recharge our batteries and have the energy to work effectively on our return. Carrying on regardless is stressful and impacts not only on our ability to work effectively, but every area of our lives including health and personal relationships. 


How do you switch off?

Change your mindset - remind yourself that it is essential to have some down time in order for you to return to work refreshed and performing at your best. Don’t give in to the temptation to compare yourself to others who might be unable or unwilling to switch off.

Plan your exit – prioritise your work and make a realistic to-do list.  Manage expectations by letting clients and colleagues know what you will be doing when and stick to it. Set up your “out of office” with the name of a colleague who can manage things in your absence. Don’t forget to be pleased with what you have achieved. It’s far easier to dwell on the things we haven’t yet got to than patting ourselves on the back for the work we have completed.

Switch off - switch off computers and put mobiles away. Now that most of us are working from home, our workstations can be very visible as a constant reminder of work.  If you have a separate space for your office, close the door or put your laptop away so you’re not tempted to have a sneaky look at emails. I know from my own experience how easy it is to get drawn in, losing an hour in the blink of an eye.

Plan activities - now you have committed to taking a break from work, put some plans in place so you have things ready to distract you – a walk in the woods, playing football or cooking with the kids, catching up on films or reading that book you haven’t had time to get to. The more you do, the easier it becomes to forget about work. That’s a good thing because you know your body and mind are then re-booting.


Don’t give in to temptation

It is hard to avoid giving in to temptation so if you can’t switch off for yourself, think how much fun the family will have with you in the room and present, not constantly distracted by messages on your phone or staring at your computer screen. If you can seize the moment and take time out to enjoy yourself and the company of those around you, everyone will benefit. Enjoy the break!





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