Hybrid work has become the dream of many employees, who are increasingly asking for it to be implemented in their company.
Spending less money on lunch and on the work commute, saving time and being able to have days where you can concentrate without being disturbed by colleagues are valuable advantages. At the same time, you also have the opportunity to go to the office, meet with your team and use all of the provided technologies.
As with “traditional” remote work, hybrid work is at risk of burnout too, but perhaps not as clearly as in the first case (according to a WHO research 92% of 18-25 year-olds and 88% of 26-35 year-olds in the USA suffered from it last year).
When time is divided between home and work, burnout can catch up with you months later, often in a subtle way that is frequently difficult to identify in advance.
How can we prevent it? Here are a few tips for setting the right boundaries between work and private life during remote working days.
1. Identify what you need to keep under control and define your limits
Everyone has weaknesses when it comes to remote working. Some people skip their lunch break, some people answer the phone well after dinner time and some people work for 10 or 12 hours without realising it. In the office, most likely, this would not happen: the schedules are well defined and the home-work trip acts as a dividing factor between the two worlds.
Think about your remote work day, identify the critical points and make decisions accordingly, obviously taking into account the needs of the company, in relation to how you would behave in the office.
2. Communicate to your team the limits you have decided on
Once you have established your limits, communicate them to the people you usually work with: management in the first place, and then the rest of the team.
3. Make your decisions concrete
Don’t let procrastination fool you: take steps now to ensure that the limits you set are respected by others, but especially by yourself. The simplest method? Block out time slots on your calendar (e.g. lunch break) and set an alarm at that time.
4. Think about other people’s limits and be flexible accordingly
If you have the possibility to work flexibly (in your most productive hours), when setting your limits also consider the needs of your co-workers.
Do you need at least one hour of work in sync with the whole team? Does your work affect the activities of a colleague? Could your absence at certain times slow down the workflow of the whole team?
Consider all possibilities and be flexible to keep interpersonal relationships and productivity strong.
5. Create a routine through daily check-ins
At the end of each remote work day mark your tasks as if it were a school assignment. At the end of the week you will be able to give a broader assessment of the situation, to see what you can improve and identify any critical issues.
Are you in a stressed state when working from home? Many people are, so there is nothing to worry about. Returning to the office may be the best solution for you.