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How to Stop Mental Exhaustion So You Can Work Smarter

Handling unclear expectations, managing too many priorities at a time, bad time management, and lack of control: this is how mental exhaustion sets in. Sounds familiar? Let's see how we can stop mental exhaustion so you can work smarter, not harder.

Protect Your Mental Energy

The false belief that if you're not working hard, you're not being productive is the first to give up when it comes to mental exhaustion. Actually, working in overdrive is closer to probably getting nowhere fast.

So, when you are thinking about stopping mental exhaustion so that you can work smarter, think about protecting your mental energy. Work slowly, organize, avoid going into an alert state. In the alert state, you will consume double energy and you will work at half the usual capacity. Try breathing exercises to calm yourself down and re-enter your natural rhythm. Also, don't forget to book some time off work to rest and recharge.

Set Priorities
Don't try to do everything at once. You have to be a little Napoleon to do multiple tasks at once ... Remember, there are priorities. Even among those priorities, there are...priorities. Life revolves around those priorities.
Constantly multitasking can be both stressful and unproductive. It is not surprising that people are suffering, more and more, from burnout. And burnout means less productivity.

When everything is a priority, nothing is actually is a priority. Why? Because is quite impossible to do several things at the same time. In this case, how do you determine which task is a priority? You work on everything and accomplish none. This is how mental exhaustion begins.


Make self-care a priority. No matter how much work you have, it is mandatory to make time to breathe. Literally, stress makes you tired, it's proven. Try introducing mindfulness in your schedule. Taking a few mindful breaths every hour might make a real difference in your productivity. Do not neglect the oxygenation of the brain.

PS. Take more breaks: our brains are, on average, able to focus for 90 minutes only - and need at least fifteen minutes rest after that. It's natural!

When you have a lot to do, you can interchange heavier tasks with lighter tasks. If you can't afford a break, at least allow your brain to relax while solving simple tasks.

Eliminate Distractions

Hello, are you here?
Studies show that most people don't really work eight hours a day as we can't be productive for more than about four hours a day. That makes the other four hours filled with little distractions, stress, work anxiety, and exhaustive multitasking – and that leads to dissatisfaction. Even then, if you have to work for more than those four hours, try to eliminate distractions: mute your phone, close the unnecessary tabs, complete one task at a time and stop trying to multitask.
PS. Always start with what stresses you the most, you will feel liberated and, you will work more relaxed on the following tasks.
Not everyone is privileged to do what they love for a living, but it's great to fight for it till the end. Even if you are following your passions, there will still be tasks you're not happy to do.

How to stop mental exhaustion so you can work smarter? 
Do the work you love – and everything will make special sense, will seem easier and you'll feel less exhausted and more productive. It’s proven.

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Any facts, figures or references stated here are made by the author & don't reflect the endorsement of iU at all times unless otherwise drafted by official staff at iU. This article was first published here on 16th February 2022.
Ana Sorina Corneanu
My name is Ana, I love writing, I believe in our best self and love.

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