The Importance of Unplugging

Burnout is a real thing.

We all know that feeling of being overworked, under slept and burnt out. There are often many warning signs before the full-fledged exhaustion hits but many of us power through to try and sneak a few more to do's and a little more productivity in. Next thing you know, you dread going to work and can barely get your head off the pillow in the morning.

It’s much easier to avoid burnout then to fix burnout, so let’s talk about the number one prevention strategy:Unplugging! You heard that right, put down the iPhone, iPad and MacBook. It’s time to go back to the offline basics.

Schedule your unplugging.

Set a time every night when you will turn off all electronics. Instead of scrolling through your Instagram feed, try taking a hot shower, drinking a cup of tea or reading an actual book(no Kindles allowed). This not only helps with regulating your circadian rhythm but also helps you wind down before bed. This habit can also greatly enhance the quality of your sleep. #winwin

Your vacation is for vacationing.

Are you familiar with the client or coworker who is always answering emails while they are on vacation? Don’t be that person! When you take vacation, fully commit to unplugging all work-related devices. To do this successfully takes a bit of preparation but is worth it. Let all clients and colleagues know exactly when you will be gone and any pertinent project details they should be aware of. For email, set an automatic away message with an emergency contact in the event there is a situation while you’re away. That way all of your contacts have the ability to reach out to someone if absolutely necessary and you can stay worry-free on the beach, margarita in hand.

Be aware of the signs.

With a little practice, you will begin to recognize the warning signs of burnout and can avoid it altogether. Start to notice the cues your body and mind give you. Are you lethargic and weepy? Time for a happy hour with some of your best buds. Are you irritable and upset? Time for a sweat sesh at your favorite workout studio. Once you start to notice the signs of burnout, you can triage the situation with a non-screen related activity.

Don’t sweat it if you do get burnt out, it happens to the best of us, but next time you’ll have some tools to start feeling better right away. There really isn’t anything better than face time with real people in real time. Offline time can be the best time.

Written by Lauren Ellis, 2017-18 Communications Committee Co-Chair