Academic Burnout – How do you switch off?

Academic Burnout – How do you switch off?

As a researcher, academic or PhD student, it can be difficult to completely disconnect with your work without feeling guilty about it. Rest is extremely important for productivity and mental health. The question of how to “switch off” from work was posed in our online journal club this week (please let me know if you would like to join us!). I thought this would be a great space to share the tips and tricks that were discussed among fellow researchers and PhD students from a variety of disciplines:

1. Have a switch off time during the working week (eg. 6pm) where you cease to check/respond to emails and undertake any work.

  1. Promise yourself one FULL day off on the weekend (no emails and no reading or writing for work).
  2. Look at your to-do list and schedule time in your diary over the coming days to dedicate to each task so you can reduce your mental load and busy mind.
  3. Get out in nature as much as possible. This might mean a walk through your local park, a swim in the ocean or playing with your kids in the garden away from your phone.
  4. Have a mini-break to look forward to every few weeks/months (eg. a 2-day camping trip, a dinner date with your partner or a friend).
  5. Mindful meditation (can be as short as 5 mins a day to see benefits).
    7. Exercise! Make time for it during your week no matter what. Stretching, walking, attend a class – anything to get that blood moving!
  6. Make a rule of having dinner without your phone every night.
  7. Don’t have notifications on your phone for emails or for any social media outlets!I’m curious to hear what you do to switch off? Please let me know in the comments below and I can add to this list.




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