There are two types of workaholics. The first, under a pile of cases, feel like tired donkeys: you can’t give up on anything important, and you have no strength to pull the cart anymore.
The second type pulls approximately the same heavy haul of tasks, but they pull it cheerfully, with fire. Their work is their favorite, and the tasks inspire them. They work 15 hours a day, with no days off, and they are happy that they manage to do so much.
So the task is not to move from the first to the second category. It’s to realize that both scenarios lead to a rather sad finale – burnout, exacerbation of health problems and other forms of “revenge” with which your body will explain that you can’t do that to it.
That said, people who adore what they do often burn out even faster. They feel fulfilled, enthusiastic, energized. At the same time, they are still overworked, but they often miss the faint signals that they need rest. And suddenly they find themselves on the verge of emotional or physical exhaustion, when the work they love has lost its meaning, they feel completely indifferent, and even if they sometimes get enough sleep, they still do not have the strength to get out of bed in the morning. Hence the conclusion: it is important to notice the need for rest in time. And rest before you collapse without energy. On how to notice the first signals and how to rest properly, and talk further.
How to Know When You Need to Rest
Here are some of the signs that may tell you that it’s time to rest and seriously consider reducing your workload:
- You have become more anxious than usual. For example, you notice that when you go to bed, you can’t fall asleep for a long time and are going over work issues in your head.
- You have become more emotional about seemingly small problems. For example, you spill coffee on your sleeve and your day is ruined. Or yelled at a colleague, waiter, or significant other. And it’s happening more and more often.
- You find it difficult to focus on one task. You are often distracted at work – for example, by checking email, talking to a colleague, watching social media – and then have a hard time getting back to business.
- You are hard given to usually feasible intellectual tasks and creative solutions, where you have to think up something, create from scratch.
- You do not want to communicate with people and you get tired of even a short pleasant conversation. Everyone has a need for solitude, but you should be wary if you start to avoid communication more and more often.
All these signals may indicate that you need rest.
The need to “eat” stress with sweets can also be indicative. Or a craving for alcohol. Or any other excessive hobby that lasts for some time: driving yourself to exhaustion at the gym several times a week, “immersed” in social networks or watching soap operas. Something that may provide temporary relief, but in the longer term does not carry a sustaining effect. Especially if you do it instead of resting and feel irritated and dissatisfied with yourself, but it’s hard to stop.
How to Rest for Complete Relaxation
Recognize That You Need a Vacation and Stop Blaming Yourself for Laziness
If you’re a keen workaholic and admire people who sleep for 3 hours at a time, there may be a problem here. You can start with this thought: without adequate and regular rest, you become less efficient. And so rest can be considered an important component of success.
If attitudes such as “I rest, then I’m lazy and worthless” prevent you from resting, try to work with them. Ask questions: “Is this really true?”, “Do I have reason to believe that people who allow themselves to rest are less productive?”, “What happens if I slow down and let myself rest?”
Plan Vacations the Same Way You Plan Work Things
To do this, record vacation time in your diary. And plan work tasks with that time in mind. This is especially important for freelancers and those who are self-employed – put vacations (including vacations) on your calendar first, and then work tasks.
Agree with colleagues and loved ones that you don’t answer calls and emails after a certain time in the evening and on weekends. This is not always possible, especially if you can not manage your own time, or the specifics of work or company culture requires you to be in touch all the time.
If you’re a manager, rest yourself and insist that your employees get plenty of rest (and give them that opportunity without inundating them with texts and emails at night and during vacations).
Take Short Breaks During the Day
Both long rest (2-4 times a year for one or two weeks) and rest during the week are important. Besides, short breaks during the work day are important.
- It’s possible to work by “pomodoro” (and take a 5-minute break after every 25 minutes of work) or a 10-minute break at the end of each hour. During this time, it’s possible to enjoy 22Bet in-play betting or listen to your favorite podcast. It’s important that this format of work becomes habitual and comfortable for you.
Look for a Balance Between Active and Relaxing Rest
Besides an active vacation (like when you go on a “3 countries in 3 days” trip, which can be a fulfilling but also exhausting experience), you need a relaxing vacation. Rest that calms the nervous system, helps release emotional tension, and allows the body to complete a stress response (the latter is great to do through gentle movement practices, a light jog or walk.
Look for a comfortable balance between active (physical activity, trips to museums, travel, parties) and relaxing (walks in nature, massage, time with pets, an aromatic bath). At times in your life when the stress load is higher than usual, add more relaxing rest.
Figure out What Types of Rest Support You Best
Make a list of recreational activities that help you relax and reboot. These could be a nature walk, journaling, spending time with pets, loved ones and friends, alone time, massage and self-massage, meditation, body practices, creativity, volunteering. Have it at your fingertips when you don’t have the energy to figure out what to do to rest (and not choose something that doesn’t really help).
Watching series doesn’t always help you relax. More often than not, it’s an extra strain on your nervous system. Try to monitor your condition after watching soap operas of different genres. If you can’t fall asleep after them, wondering what’s going to happen next – it’s not a vacation. At least, don’t watch them before going to bed, choosing something light or funny instead (by the way, videos with cats and other cute animals are very relaxing and calming). And of course, regulate the time you spend on social media simply by scrolling your feed. Getting into a late-night discussion about issues important to you in the comments is also not conducive to relaxation, quite the opposite.
If you’re not at all used to resting and relaxing, start small. Not a half-hour meditation, but just a three-minute meditation to start with. Not a 2-hour walk before bed, but at least 15 minutes to walk around the house, taking your time. Gradually increase the time and change your habits.
Find Your Formula for Quality Rest
Some people just need an hour to reset, while others need a lot more time. So don’t look around, don’t compare yourself to others, don’t resent, “How could I be tired, I didn’t do anything,” but listen to yourself. The amount of rest you need depends on many factors: degree of fatigue, intensity of life, information load, external circumstances, your health, in the end.
Develop Body Awareness
The body is constantly sending us signals. But for a variety of reasons, many of us don’t recognize or be aware of them. We can’t recognize and discern even the basic needs of the body to distinguish hunger from fatigue, to understand what it is we need at that moment – to lie down or to walk. Often we only notice very strong discomfort in the sensations (for example, when something is sinking in or we are living through very strong emotions) and it is also difficult for us to cope with this, so we switch our attention to something else to distract ourselves. We can start with the simplest exercise, asking ourselves several times a day: “How am I doing right now? What do I need right now? How can I take care of myself?” It’s a skill and can be developed just like any other. Even if you don’t believe in it, just try it.