Dale Carnegie of Orange County | Improving Leadership Effectiveness

Avoiding Digital Burnout as a Remote Employee

It is easy to get caught up in becoming a workaholic as a remote employee. Technology was created to make work easier, but it also makes it harder to disconnect. On top of that, being removed from face-to-face interaction with colleagues you need to get work accomplished can cause additional stress and accelerate digital fatigue. Today, with so many people working from home, it is important to avoid digital burnout by practicing healthy digital habits.

  1. Utilize Focused Worktime. When working remotely, time can fly and we can get to the end of the day without feeling like we accomplished anything. When you need to be focused on a task…disconnect, turn off your phone, close your email, and work quietly.
  2. Focus on One Thing at a Time. It is easy to get pulled into having multiple applications and windows open. Too much at one time can overwhelm you. When possible avoid multi-tasking by working on one thing at a time.
  3. Employ Digital Etiquette. People seem to lose respect for each other when using technology. It’s also common for linear messages to be misinterpreted. Use ten times more sensitivity in your digital communication than you normally do in face-to-face communication. Never send an IM or email without considering how the message would be taken in a face-to-face situation.
  4. Leverage Video Conferencing. Body language and vocal tones are a big way that we communicate and connect with our peers. Set up video conferences for scheduled meetings instead of using conference lines where you can’t see your colleagues.
  5. Use Online Collaboration Tools. Too many emails back and forth can be stressful. Limit email clutter by using online collaboration tools that allow you to share documents and work on projects collaboratively.
  6. Focus Communication. Give your undivided attention to the people attending the video conference or speaking to on the phone. If your phone rings, you get an IM, or an email comes in while you are talking to someone, avoid multitasking.
  7. Routinely Unplug. Taking breaks from technology helps you to decompress and avoid digital burnout. Set technology-free times when you can focus on other things such as eating with your family, exercising, or just reading a good book.

Employing these steps can help create breaks in your digital usage for a digital detox. When you build boundaries into our daily routine and create healthy habits, you can avoid digital burnout.

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