Are you getting to work and feeling like a vampire has drained the life out of you? Is your brain shutting down and your body going into autopilot as you carry out your daily tasks?
If so… there could be the hair-raising possibility that you are becoming a zombie (and not the kind that goes trick or treating) but a real-life work zombie.
This Halloween, we are stepping into Victor Frankenstein’s boots and offering tips on how you can re-energise yourself at work!
First: Let’s Spot the Symptoms
Becoming a work zombie may seem like a transformation that even someone with bad eyesight can spot from a mile away. But surprisingly, this form of zombification is more subtle than stumbling around and demanding “Braiiiins.”
Instead, the symptoms come in the form of:
Lacking motivation, even when carrying out tasks you used to find enjoyable.
Alienating yourself from your co-workers.
Struggling to sleep (and not because the pesky wolves keep howling at the moon).
Unreasonably lashing out at your co-workers.
Experiencing physical side-effects that even magic potions can’t fix (such as headaches and fatigue).
Unable to find meaning in your job and losing a grasp on your goals.
Second: Pinpointing the Cause
Are you in a Chilling Work Environment?
A positive work environment goes a long way and can be the difference between a happy employee and an unhappy employee. Therefore, a workplace that feels as welcoming as a haunted house (and a support system that gives you nightmares) will unsurprisingly leave you feeling uncomfortable and on edge. As a result, you may find yourself dreading the idea of going to work… a form of stress which will not only impact your professional life but can also creep into your personal life.
Are you Struggling with a Horrifying Workload?
There is such a thing as too much work, and there's nothing wrong with admitting that.
Sometimes it can feel like admitting defeat if we can’t do it all, but if you are given enough tasks to keep a small team busy, or your calendar looks like it’s been invaded by aliens, then it’s not your fault. If you push too hard, you might find yourself becoming mentally exhausted, making silly mistakes that can come back to haunt you…
Do you have a Nightmarish Work-Life Balance?
There’s a reason why we take regular breaks at work and separate our professional and personal lives. We need time to relax, unwind and put ourselves first.
However, if you find that you're still analysing data reports during your lunch break and that work responsibilities are following you home like a ghost with boundary issues, you could be slipping into unhealthy work habits.
If you don’t get the appropriate amount of rest, your brain will be constantly buzzing, leading to sleepless nights and grouchy interactions with your co-workers.
Lastly: The Cure
Luckily, it’s not all doom and gloom because we have a few solutions up our sleeves which will help brighten up your workday and make you feel human again:
To improve your mental and physical well-being, you should take up a regular form of exercise (even walking to work), introduce healthy sleeping patterns into your routine and schedule time to relax each day. This will help reduce fatigue and give your mind and body a chance to recharge for the next day.
A proper form of organisation can help you keep track of your workday and stop you from feeling like you are drowning in emails and paperwork. You can do this by creating to-do lists, step-by-step plans, and delegating responsibilities. As a result, you can see if you are spending too much time on certain tasks and start managing your time more efficiently.
Ask for Support
There is nothing wrong with asking for a little bit of help, especially when it comes to your workload. If you express your concerns with your manager, then they might be able to lessen your tasks or even add some flexibility to your deadlines. This will help reduce any pressure and give your calendar some breathing room!
Remove yourself from Unhealthy Situations
If you are in a negative work environment and not receiving the support you deserve, then perhaps it’s time to start looking elsewhere. At the end of the day, you need to put yourself first - you can’t thrive in a position where you are unhappy.
If you feel like your goals are no longer a top priority, or you can no longer see the meaning behind your role, perhaps it’s time to start shifting your perspective and looking at the bigger picture.
When you go to work, take note of your daily tasks (no matter how small) and ask yourself, how does your work positively impact others and make their lives easier/better? Once you start looking at things through a positive mindset, you will re-discover your meaning and find your goals becoming a whole lot clearer!