While the majority of us didn’t see the pandemic coming, we had all pinned our hopes that 2021 would be the year it would all go back to normal. Now four months in, that doesn’t seem likely any time soon. Amidst memes galore, we have found ourselves calculating how we can “fully utilize” the time that was allocated for travelling to work or going to meetings. However, what most of us have forgotten is that it was and still is a pandemic and not a productivity challenge!
Realistically speaking, it sure is not easy to pause and play while others around us are always hustling. The pressure seems never to ease. However, I genuinely believe in the idea of balance, the idea of pausing in the pursuit of happiness and just being happy!
If you find yourself relentlessly hustling, running in the rat race in the corporate sector or are an entrepreneur or a solopreneur and find yourself feeling burned out, here are some tips to help you:
What is your vision?
Scrolling through social media platforms such Instagram, Facebook or Linkedin can make us feel insecure. That is because we tend to make a 100% apple to apple comparison with other people. While doing that is natural, we tend to forgo the efforts we have been putting into our work, our progress and our vision.
In my opinion, there are two ways in which this can be tackled:
(a) Vision Board: A vision board is a visual representation of your own goals, aims and vision. There are no rules to be followed here! It is your vision board, and you can make it as you wish! You can be as creative as you wish to be. However, if you are tech-savvy, then there are several apps you can turn to. It’s Oprah approved!
(b) Scroll less and create more: This entails being mindful of the time you spend on these social media channels versus the time when you work on your personal goals.
Is the comparison logical?
Comparison is natural. It is understandable. However, is it leading to not being able to focus on yourself and your goals? Is it leading to you feeling that you are not doing enough? Is it leading to you not appreciating your efforts and leading you to put in some extra hours while you are already done with your pre-decided tasks?
If you answered with a “yes” to these questions, this means that you need to start remaining mindful when you are peeping into other people’s end results and start comparing the same with your behind the scenes! This means that you also need to be mindful of not making an apple to apple comparison!
Are you pausing?
I personally feel that overexhaustion and sleepless nights have been glorified in today’s time. What instead needs to be glorified is the need to take care of oneself because, honestly, work shall never end. It’s essential to have your own personal pause ritual. The concept of pause rituals as given by psychologist Sonali Gupta can help us rejuvenate and recharge. A pause ritual simply means “to pause” and just be. Mine is to have a cup of tea every evening on my balcony.
When we are working on tasks, it is natural only to trust ourselves. Delegation is an art. However, an art worth learning and using! I am sure there are so many tasks that do not require your “expert stance.” Delegation does not only allow you to focus on tasks that truly require your expertise and precision. But, it also allows a chance for others to learn!
Is perfectionism required every time?
There are some tasks that I like to call “hero” tasks. This means that these tasks require your focused attention and maybe also require you to put in your best shot! However, a burnout situation usually happens when we miss the fine line between perfecting some essential tasks and perfecting all tasks that come our way!
It’s essential to be mindful of the tasks that need that extra care versus the ones which can be done in an adequate fashion!
In the pursuit of happiness, it is so essential to pause and just be happy, to be grateful for all that we have and to be optimistic for all that we can and will achieve!
Saniya Bedi is a psychologist based in New Delhi, India. Her work focuses on a wide range of topics including anxiety and time management among others. You can reach her here.