In today's fast-paced world, virtual work is becoming more and more common. For many of our clients who aren't considered fully virtual, they still work from home, keep up with emails on their cell phones, and call in for video conferences while on the go to get it all done. One client shared with me that her role is demanding less time in the office and more time working virtually. But, what sounded like a fantastic new way of working was actually creating some anxiety for her.
She initially planned on trading her typical commute time for quality time and breakfast with her family each morning. However, she told me, “I rush through the breakfasts because I feel guilty having a nice relaxed breakfast in the middle of the week. I've also been struggling to build in recovery time during my days. I know it will enhance my performance, but I also feel guilty recovering while the workload is high and other team members are working.”
I wasn't surprised by her statements because we see this all the time. In fact, if I'm honest, I too struggle with the guilt of recovery while working virtually. To help with this and to be more strategic with recovery, I recommend you consciously stop your workday at a similar time each evening. This allows you time to set your intentions for the evening before your family comes home, have a focused and engaging dinner with them, and truly wind down before going to sleep. Interesting enough, very few of our clients feel guilty when they have to do work after normal work hours but they do feel guilty applying their recovery during work hours.
At TIGNUM, the emotion of guilt is an interesting one. It can quickly eat away at your self-image and leave you emotionally drained. When we understand where our guilt comes from, and the true performance benefits of recovery, we can learn to rectify this Sustainable High Impact pitfall with some new thinking and new behaviors.
What clearly helped me was the adjustment of my personal “ToBeVision” - how I want to be as a leader, a high performer, a husband, and a dad. My evening work shut down was not a compromise to my standards anymore; it was now part of my Sustainable High Impact plan. It allowed me to have the kind of impact I wanted to have on both my family and myself. Interesting enough, this new approach has also helped many of our clients be more productive, more creative, and definitely a lot more fun to be around.
Next time you are on a recovery break and feel guilty, remember that it is often during recovery that your greatest ideas and solutions are created.
As always, we'd love to hear your thoughts.