7 Tips for Getting Un-Stuck at Work
It’s been nearly a year since we were plunged into a world of “work from home” and video conferences. If you’re feeling stuck, helpless, or overwhelmed at your job, you’re not alone!
A 2017 study shows that nearly two-thirds of America’s working population feels disengaged or indifferent at their jobs. This means that only one in three employees feels motivated when they’re working!
Studies have shown that constant stress or feelings of disinterest while you’re at work can actually cause your IQ to drop! As a result, your brain can’t “learn” how to get out of these stressful situations. It’s a downward spiral.
So what can you do to get out of a rut at work and avoid burnout? Read on to learn some easy ways to kick your brain back into gear!
7 Easy Ways To Kick Your Brain Back into Gear
1. If your day feels disorganized… make a to-do list and cross it off as you go.
When your day is packed with deadlines and meals have to be eaten on-the-go, the last thing you want to do is make a list to deal with it all. But if you feel absolutely stuck in your swamp of tasks, a to-do list is the way to go!
Break down your bigger tasks into smaller chunks so it’s easier to tackle. Instead of writing “Plan Presentation,” you might write “Plan talking points for Introduction,” and so on. Simply writing down your tasks can make you more effective! Plus, crossing off your tasks gives you a sense of accomplishment.
2. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by tasks... strike off the easy ones first!
Working from home is a wild and untamed land, especially since your personal and work life might blend together. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the number of things you have to do in a day--even with your to-do list handy.
When you’re tackling your task list, get a jump on the day by doing the easy stuff first. It seems backwards, but it works! If something takes less than 2 minutes to do, do it right away. Clean that dirty bowl from lunch. Send that thank-you email you’ve been putting off. Take the socks off the floor and put them in the laundry bin.
Once you’ve done a few quick tasks, you’ll feel accomplished and on a roll to tackle your other ones.
3. If you’ve been working on the same task for a while… be silly!
Take a moment to doodle aimlessly, write a silly story, dance, or sing. Do something that isn’t work-related. Bonus points if your “silly break” is away from your screen! Activities like these give your brain a break from monotonous tasks.
On top of that, stretching your creativity with art or music can help you return to your work with renewed vigour. Creativity helps you develop more problem-solving skills, and enables you to approach situations from new angles.
4. If you’ve lost sight of your goal… take time to refocus yourself
It’s hard to “keep your eye on the prize” if you don’t know what the prize is! Distractions, obstacles (and sometimes poor managers) can cause you to lose sight of what you’re working towards.
Refocus on your vision and get back on track. If it’s hard to focus on a goal for your team or your company as a whole, maybe set a personal goal! This could be as simple or as detailed as you want it to be. Just visualizing what you want to focus on can help you keep your eye on what’s important.
You could even make a vision board for a physical reminder of what you’re working towards. Whether it’s a career, lifestyle, or health goal, vision boards can serve as a daily encouragement as you work towards your goal.
5. If your body hurts from constant stress… take a minute to stretch.
Maybe you’re feeling physically stuck at work. Your neck cramps up, your shoulders are tight, and your legs feel stiff. Improper posture and constant strain on your body can lead to many more problems later on, including poor circulation, fatigue, and less motivation.
In fact, body aches can cause even more stress for you--who wants to work at a desk while their body is uncomfortable?
Take some time to relax your shoulders, unclench your jaw, and take a few deep breaths. Stretch your body and loosen your muscles before returning to work (make sure you have good posture!).
6. If your brain feels like mush… get some nourishment.
Being hungry or thirsty can become quite a distraction when you’re trying to concentrate! If you can’t seem to focus on a task at hand, take a quick water and snack break. But make sure you’re snacking on something high in protein! Sugary snacks might give you an energy burst, but it also comes with an energy crash at the end.
Make sure you’re staying hydrated, too. Drinking water can give you a 14% increase in productivity! Keep a glass with you at all times and sip throughout the day.
7. If you feel like you just can’t do it… try some positive self-talk.
Work can get long and frustrating, especially if you seem to be running into the same roadblocks over and over. You might be beating yourself up after a few unsuccessful attempts.
Don’t do that! This sort of negative self-talk only serves to plunge you further into a pit of negativity. Of course, you might be having an off-day at work, but no need to let these setbacks kill your productivity.
Go easy on yourself and try positive self-talk methods to keep you going. Don’t be afraid to reach out to others for support as well!
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