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How to combat burnout at work and achieve work-life balance

Are you tired of hearing the phrase, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy?”

Well, no matter how redundant it sounds, it holds true in every sense. Be it employees with full-time jobs or freelancers with flexible work schedules, burnout at work is a concept known to all of us.

But, this begs the question, “What are we doing about it?”

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! In this article, we will dive deep into the entire journey of combating burnout at work. Right from identifying the signs of burnout to the effects of burnout on our physical and mental health, here’s your step-by-step guide to achieving a work-life balance.

How to Identify the Signs of Burnout at Work?

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– Decreased Level of Productivity

Have you ever been so swamped with work that you end up being irritated with the people around you? Well, knowingly or unknowingly, we all have been guilty of doing this, at some point in our lives. But as it turns out, burnout not only hampers your work process but also stands responsible for irritability in your behavior.

Moreover, whether it is scrolling through social media on your phone or watching Netflix while working, it all results in decreased productivity.

Because of this, burned-out employees’ quality and consistency of work can suffer as a result of a loss of energy, transforming a normally productive person into one who provides the bare minimum.

– The Classic “I don’t feel like working” Phase

The title says it all, doesn’t it?

As employees when we tend to overpromise on deadlines and consider maintaining an unrealistic level of productivity, we lose out on our leisure time and sleeping hours required for an individual to function better.

As a result of which, we push ourselves to a state of exhaustion making us fall into the deep pit of the “I don’t feel like working” phase.

– Headache and Tiredness

Do you skip meals because of work? Here’s your reminder, my friend!

Skipping meals too often and not paying enough attention to your health can lead to burnout as well. Not just that, it causes you persistent headaches, stress-induced illness, and of course, burnout fatigue- all summing up to poor physical health.

If you are someone who is suffering from persistent headaches and similar symptoms, we recommend seeking medical help.

Now that you know what burnout can do to your physical and mental well-being, it’s time to work towards achieving that ideal work-life balance.

Your Step-by-Step Guide to Achieving Work-life Balance

As working professionals, we preach maintaining a work-life balance but how do you actually achieve it? How do you make sure that you are meeting all the deadlines while making time for your family?

We’ll dive into each of these details but first, let us understand what work-life balance really means.

– What is work-life balance?

Work-life balance is the state of equilibrium where you are meeting all the requirements at work while allocating enough time for your family and personal self-care. In a nutshell, it’s all about striking that perfect balance between your professional and personal life.

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– How to achieve work-life balance? (6 Step Framework)

Combating burnout at work is easier said than done but with the right steps, slowly and steadily, you start walking on the pathway of work-life balance.

Alright, let’s dive right into it!

1) Learn to communicate boundaries

The solution is simple: If your work wraps up at 6 pm, don’t log back into the system post that. Allot the remainder of the time to your personal life by investing in hobbies, and most importantly, spending time with your family and friends because let’s face it- socialization is just as important for us to avoid burnout at work.

In case you don’t have definite working hours, we recommend that you set your working hours straight. While your working hours may differ from day-to-day but it’s ideal to set specific work hours on the basis of your to-do list to give that required time to your personal life.

2) Say ‘Yes’ to health exercises


When was the last time you stepped out for a nice evening walk? Something to ponder over, isn’t it?

More often than not, we get so engrossed in this modern-mechanized world that we forget to give health its due importance. Of course, #WorkWorkWork sounds like a great hashtag but working without health exercises can eventually cause you health-related problems because of physical inactivity.

From meditation to cardio to aerobics, you can resort to the health exercise that suits you the best! Even a 30-minute walk after hours of continuous work proves to be therapeutic as you return to your desk with that needed boost of motivation.

3) Make space in your to-do-list for family time

Ticking off the tasks from our to-do list has become an obsession for most working professionals. Simply making a note of allocating some time for your family serves as a great reminder on days when you are swamped with work.

4) Pledge to a self-care routine

Do you recall the last time you followed a skin-care routine? Or spend time on a hobby that  makes you happy?

If your answer is ‘No!’, here’s your moment to introspect! Be it a nice skincare routine or a passion for reading novels, it serves you well in a long run and carries a range of benefits.

Most importantly, it brings that huge smile to your face and that’s what we all are aiming for, right?

5)Ask for a flexible schedule

List down the tasks, prioritize them, set realistic goals, and at last, communicate these deadlines clearly at work to ensure that you have a flexible work schedule.

This will allow you to prioritize your professional life as well as your personal life.

6)Take breaks

We ain’t no robots, are we? Taking the right amount of breaks enhances productivity while having a positive impact on your lifestyle. To increase productivity and successfully manage time, put the Pomodoro Technique to use! It breaks your work into 25-minute work sessions separated by 5-minute breathers.

This is just one of the many techniques you can use to achieve work-life balance by managing time the right way! We’ve written an entire article on “7 Time Management Skills to Beat Stress Effectively.” Make sure you check it out to get better at the art of time management.

In Conclusion

Achieving a work-life balance helps you perform better at work by increasing your productivity level and saves you from the detrimental effects of burnout on your physical and mental health.

And it goes without saying that managing your own finances is an added stress affecting your work-life balance but we have a solution for you. From installment plans to funds transfers, SCB Jumpstart can help you manage your finances with a few simple clicks.

This article is brought to you by Standard Chartered Bank (Singapore) Limited. All information provided is for informational purposes only.


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