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Here's Why It Feels Like You're Overworking Now That You WFH

Slowly, step away from your phone.
PHOTO: istockphoto

Working from home is a necessity—and in some ways, a privilege. But if this set-up is something you didn't anticipate, you probably didn't have enough time to adjust to this new work environment.

And even if your team clocks-in by a certain time, it's difficult to set boundaries and to really know when you're supposed to time-out when your "office" is in your home. If you always have that nagging feeling like your work isn't done or complete, you're not alone.

This is especially true of work that isn't easily accomplished. For example, if you have a big project that you need to launch, that usually takes weeks or months to finish; it's not something you could check off your list at the end of the day. Because of this, you probably feel like there's always more you could be doing to reach your goal faster—especially now that working with your officemates may not be as convenient as before. 

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In terms of your daily workload, a common "trigger" of feeling like you have several incomplete tasks is seeing all the red notifications on your phone. Say it's 8:30 p.m. and you've already timed-out, but your boss sends you an email. You might think, "Oh, I'm already on my phone, I might as well check it."

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This becomes a habit, and eventually, you might start to feel like you have to accomplish it because it's easy enough to do. While she might appreciate your prompt response, it creates a bad cycle for you and your team. Responding during odd hours could potentially pressure your teammates into doing the same thing. What happens is that it feels like you're always on "work mode."

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Have you noticed similar behaviors now that you're working from home? A simple trick you could do to make yourself feel like you've already done everything you *need* to do for the day is to create a checklist right before you clock-out. Writing them down and ticking them off provides a sense of closure. 

Personally, I like to be on airplane mode by a certain time, just because I can't exactly "create" distance between me and my phone in a studio, lol. I also change the settings of notifications for each app; the apps I use the most for work often stay silent until I check them again the next morning. 

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