Managing Overwhelm When Remote Working

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Avoiding overwhelm when working remotely is something all home workers should be striving to achieve. The change of location, pace and setup can be challenging to navigate even in the best of times. Throw into the mix your home life with family members in your working space and it isn’t hard to see how overwhelming the situation can actually be.


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We all know how essential it is for you to be able to focus to meet your work demands. But it is also important to make sure you separate your work and private life and prevent them from physically encroaching on each other’s space.

Set a Routine

You will likely have more free time now that you have taken your commute out of the picture. Use this time to help you get things done around the house and allow you to settle down to a full ‘working day’. It can be tempting to nip out and put the kettle on or load up the washing machine. The temptation to just do this one thing is around every corner. So delegate your old commute time to get these tasks squared away. Like to have frequent cups of coffee while you work? Who doesn’t but trips to the kitchen can seriously upset any routine you have. Make a flask of hot drinks, take it to your work area and you remove the temptation to move around your home.

Don’t forget to take your lunchtime too. away from the screen and your working environment as you would in the office. It is healthy to take a break and to get up and walk around and have soem healthy food. You would do this at your office anyway,


Change your Mindset

It can be easy to take on too much in a familiar environment. After all, you don’t have the office chatty Kathy peeking over your shoulder to distract you or other co-workers’ dramas going on in the background. But you will still have similar demands on your day and your working time. Especially if you have a family at home. Allow yourself the time to work properly and know your limits. And be ready to manage the added stress of working from home too. This is a difficult time for many people and the uncertainty of changes and world developments can affect us all. Click here to see how you can get help to manage the mental load and focus on your overall health and well being.

Tell yourself it is OK to say no, to tell people if your workload is full and you can’t take on extra work. Allow yourself the slack to fall behind and accept interruptions will happen. Don’t forget to reach out to coworkers and see if anyone can help you out.

Talk to people

Remote working can be isolating. The less you see people, the fewer conversations you will have and the more the potential for loneliness creeps in. Make it a habit to call a coworker or business partner such as a vendor during your workday. Participate in video calls if they are being arranged with work colleagues and let people know what you are doing and how you are getting on.

Remote working doesn’t mean it is easier than working in the office, far from it. So set clear communication goals, especially if you live alone. Spend some time at the beginning of your working day talking to your immediate superiors or your team and again when you clock off at the end of the day.

Last updated on September 16, 2020


  1. I started working from home just over 4 years ago, and it was definitely a transition. The best advice that I have is to set a specific ‘workspace’. This doesn’t have to be a separate room. Even just declaring a corner your workspace, or one end of the dining room table, can make a big difference. Why? This allows you to ‘go to work’ when you head to that space and then ‘leave work’ when you are done at the end of the day. The mental state is the key!

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