Many people believe that the creation and use of smartphones led to constant work hours where employees are always available; however, personal laptops transformed the “work from anywhere” environment. I am someone who still works from home due to the pandemic, so my work laptop is always easy to access in my room. The control to slow down and shut down after hours is not as easy as it seems.
If you are like me, then you are constantly on the go. I have a hard time shutting my mind off because I constantly think about the next project to complete.
A few weeks ago, my company shared drive shut down at the end of the workday so I could not access any of my work. While I had a few finishing touches to tie up, I could not access any data. Also, 10 days ago a tropical storm ravaged parts of Atlanta. Many people lost power and my house lost internet access for almost 24 hours.
Each situation gave me two emotions: frustrations and relief. While it was frustrating to not access anything that I needed to work on, it was liberating to remove all pressure and expectations of work from my shoulders. I could relax at night, read a book, and spend time with my friends. Now that I am always working from home, I am tempted to log extra hours to catch up on my project queue. I feel the internal pressure to work and removing all capabilities to work was the only way for me to fully relax my mind.
According to an Inc.com article, slowing down improves decision making, gives you more control of your emotions, and protects your health. Slowing down and shutting off gave me the break I needed. Even though it was just one day at a time, a night without thinking about work refreshed me for the rest of the week.
Your work laptop holds a big influence on your mind, even after your workday finishes. In this work from home environment, how are you managing your time at night and on the weekend? Are you working extra hours because your bedroom is now your office or are you shutting down and taking your mind off work?
Take the time to shut off after work this week and slow down. Take a night to yourself and relax because you deserve it.
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