Burnout? Lean in by Stretching Back

By Pepper Parr

August 5th, 2023



Does the prospect of a week spent lazing somewhere warm, book in hand, fill you with joy?

That’s how I feel—until the holiday begins and I realize I’ve forgotten to answer an email. Then I see two messages sitting, accusingly, in my drafts folder. I start tapping out a quick list of reminders for when I get back. This feels nicely productive, until suddenly the list has 27 items.

Nice way to spend an afternoon – something on the light side.

If you have a demanding job, proper breaks are vital. Psychoanalysts explain why relaxing can be so hard for people who feel “burnt out”—and argue that it’s not just our jobs that overwork our minds.

You could start by writing a great out-of-office reply. But try not to overthink it: perfectionism is out of favour with workers and companies alike.

No wonder so many employees are quiet quitting. Or are you more of a “cyberloafer”? If so you may be more productive than you think.

This summer, lean in by stretching back.

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