Studies show that remote workers tend to be more productive than their office-based counterparts. It’s apparent not only in their full-time jobs, but also in their side hustles as well.
If you can manage your time well, you can literally have as many clients as you can.
But that’s not always advantageous for our dear remote workers. Some of them end up suffering from physical and mental health problems due to this addiction to productivity.
This is better known as toxic productivity. And it’s as prevalent in remote work as ever.
What is Toxic Productivity?
Toxic productivity is a mindset where you value productivity above everything. It often manifests in you setting unrealistic expectations of yourself.
As a result, you work extra hours and think all your actions should have a purpose. Oftentimes, you feel guilty when you don’t do something productive or while taking breaks.
It’s an extreme mindset that will lead to burnout. Or worse, major health problems. One example is a viral story circulating on social media.
The gist is, a remote freelancer worked multiple full time jobs and earned roughly Php 600,000 a month total. It was a great income but she ended up getting diagnosed with cancer because of the unhealthy habits she ended up forming.
Using the story as an example, we can see how destructive toxic positivity can be. But the good news is, you don’t have to let things get that far..
Here are some tips to overcome toxic productivity.
Set Realistic Goals and Timelines
We all have goals, priorities, and tasks in our lives. Most of us want to achieve them as soon as possible.
The problem is some create unrealistic ones that push them well past their limits. But at what cost? Is neglecting your health worth it?
Therefore, it is better to set realistic goals and timelines. It might take longer, but your wellbeing is more important. Plus, you are more likely to achieve sustainable success this way since you can focus and work effectively.
For instance, given that deadlines aren’t too tight, you have more leeway to examine more ideas and consider different factors. Ultimately, this can lead to better execution and results.
Accepting that Breaks and Occasionally Doing Nothing Can Also Lead to Better Productivity
It might be hard to believe, but breaks and doing nothing can also lead to productivity.
For one, our body needs rest to function properly. This allows us to have more energy for better productivity.
Moreover, doing nothing is also healthy for our well-being. Taken from the Dutch concept “Niksen,” it’s all about the act of scheduling breaks or other activities to be more present in the moment.
This gives you a breather while boosting your creativity and productivity as well.
Clear Work-Life Boundaries
When you work from home, it’s difficult to separate your personal and professional life from each other. After all, you do both in the same space.
But it’s possible to systematically create boundaries regardless.
Try scheduling your working hours in time blocks and work only during the designated times.
Also, inform your clients of your business hours. Any inquiries or tasks given outside those hours should and will be attended to the next day.
Another way is to practice self-care.
Basically, self-care is a form of self-love. And when you love yourself, would you allow your body to deteriorate in exchange for more productivity?
Try to exercise more, get more sleep, or eat healthier food.
Keeping yourself in good health will lead to more productivity in the long run than constantly pushing yourself to extremes.
Practicing gratitude also helps overcome toxic productivity.
When you practice gratitude, you are more focused on the positive things in your life — making you less likely to fixate on toxic productivity.
Take a few minutes each day to list down what you’re thankful for. It can be something as big as a promotion or as seemingly small as your daily meals.
You can also use the tips above to keep any tendencies towards toxic productivity at bay while working your remote job.
And if you’re looking for online jobs, you can sign up through Remote Staff for the best job listings for Filipinos.
Remote Staff offers long-term remote working opportunities for different fields.
And when you let go of toxic productivity, you can -and will- definitely reach success faster in your remote working career – and still be healthy enough to enjoy it. Cheers!