We’ve all had to deal with feeling sleepy from time to time at work, whether at home or in the office.
But this feeling should be differentiated from always feeling tired and working. This is because chronic exhaustion can lead to severe job burnout, which is more difficult to overcome.
So what can you do when feeling tired at work? What are some of the do’s and dont’s when it comes to dealing with work fatigue?
Dive into this article to find out!
What is work fatigue?
According to this study, NCIB
Work fatigue is defined as excessive exhaustion and a reduction in functional capacity that occurs during and after a workday.
Here fatigue is a reduction in the capacity for doing work that comes as a result of work. It is a mix of emotional, mental, and physical tiredness that isn’t removed by adequate rest and sleep time.
Such fatigue can reduce one’s ability to focus, perform tasks and lower creativity and motivation.
What can you do to stop the symptoms of workplace fatigue?
1. Establish and maintain work-life boundaries with discipline.
Even if you sincerely enjoy your job, your mind and body require adequate rest in to recover and perform optimally.
When dealing with work tiredness, it’s important to remember to set healthy work-life limits.
A worker who is well-rested and invigorated, both physically and intellectually, is significantly more useful than one who is overworked.
Set boundaries between work and rest, leave your work at work, and don’t take it home with you. Being available for work-related demands at all times leaves you with insufficient time to rest, resulting in workplace tiredness.
Boundaries between work and “no work” are clearly blurred when it comes to remote work. You always want to check your mail 24/7, your jumping from one work call meeting to another at odd hours of the day, etc – We find it harder to unplug and end the workday on time
Creating an end-of-workday ritual and taking efforts to keep to it – yes, this is always the hardest part at first – is a terrific way to unplug. Turn off the device, go for a walk if possible, read a book, etc. Let whatever activity you do mark the end of the workday to you specifically.
2. Switch out your diet
A poor diet, lack of exercise, and deprived sleep undeniably contribute to your daily energy levels and productivity at work. Not getting enough sleep heightens the risk of dehydration, which has a direct impact on your performance. To kick work fatigue to the curb, try switching out the food you eat.
A high carbohydrate diet – especially those that are unhealthy — and an overindulging in sugar has also been linked to work fatigue. Also, caffeine, another fatigue promoter, may impair your long-term productivity.
For example, consuming a lot of high carbs food – like bread, sugary products – can give the energy boost at first, but only for a short time then leave you drained for longer. Your brain is over-flooded with hormones related to sleep, and you begin feeling tired.
Substitute them with foods that can provide you with energy for an extended time.
Balancing protein and carbohydrates in your diet will help keep blood sugar levels in check. Nuts are great fatigue fighters. Their fat and protein will give you a boost of energy without making you crash later.
In the case of coffee consumption, it may seem paradoxical, as we tend to be more productive after consuming caffeine, but what you are doing is tricking your body into thinking it has more energy than it does. When the body later discovers that it doesn’t have the energy it thought it did, you feel that caffeine “crash.”
In general, having a poor diet is detrimental in keeping your productivity levels high for an extended time at work.
Ongoing health problems, which require a healthcare specialist can also result in workplace fatigue.
Finally – Keep yourself hydrated. During the day, try drinking enough of water and eat water-rich foods. You can feel weak and exhausted if your body isn’t properly hydrated. As a result, water is critical for transporting nutrients throughout the body and removing waste materials.
3. Create a schedule based on your productivity pattern
Working on a schedule that doesn’t correspond with your own “biological clock” and productivity patterns could be another reason for feeling weary at work.
Do you like to work in the morning or at night? We all follow an individual internal cycle of wakefulness and sleep – a circadian rhythm. This is relatively easy to conclude without a specific analysis. However, you may use some assistance in identifying your peak productivity hours.
According to Small Business Trend Report, in America, 66% of individuals working from home say they are likelier to work nights and weekends than before working remotely.
Learning when your creative juices flow best or when you have a daily productivity boost at a specific hour might help you manage your work schedule significantly.
Easier to concentrate in the morning? Then Schedule your meetings in the afternoon and dedicate the early hours to deep work.
Have productivity peaks in the afternoon? Why not consider your options of starting the workday a bit later, so you don’t torture your body and mind with early morning sessions.
Ultimately, it’s all about staying in sync with your body’s internal schedule to avoid feeling fatigued
4. Take a day off (and remember to take breaks during work)
Taking breaks at work is just as necessary for work performance as keeping up your focus. The most effective employees, according to article by desktime, work for 52 minutes and then take a 17-minute break
Working in these sprints allows their cognitive functions and bodies to recuperate, allowing the following work session to be “kicked off” with high efficiency.
Another technique you could use is the Pomodoro technique –
The idea behind this technique is that you work in sprints throughout the day, with short pauses in between.
In fact, there are only five steps to it:
- Select a task.
- Make a 25-minute timer.
- Remain focused on the task until the timer beeps.
- Take a short rest — about 5 minutes.
- Take a lengthier break every 4 Pomodoros, or 3-4 25-minute work periods, usually between 15 and 30 minutes.
In case none of the methods of dealing with work fatigue seem to be working, you may want to consider taking a day off and make getting quality sleep at night your top priority
Without the right amount of sleep, your body suffers in a multitude of ways. It impacts your energy levels, cognitive functions, and motivation, which can quickly lead to general fatigue, affecting your work performance as well
If you need help falling asleep, check out these 20 hacks to help you catch your sleep quicker
Take action with all these steps to beat workplace fatigue and get on creating your wellness lifestyle. Because when you feel better, you feel better!