Fourteen tips for leaving work at work:
Make lists to prioritize
Create a to do list for the beginning of the week and edit it every morning then look at it before you leave work so I can check off everything you have done and know what to prioritize the next morning. This gives you a sense of closure at the end of the day and that physical ticking off a task is actually a great mental feeling.
Take a minute to tidy up
Clean up your desk/workstation each day just before you leave work for the day. It takes no more than a minute or two and brings about closure to the day. When you return the next morning, you walk into an organized work space and that helps you think clearly and begin the new day.
Don’t stress about finishing everything on your list
Finish the most important tasks of the day first and keep the second half for not-on-priority tasks. This way you do not stress over work not being completed
Set boundaries with work email
Avoid checking work emails or your phone over the weekend — put your out of office response on until 9 am Monday morning. That way people know not to expect a response from you, and I don’t feel guilty about not getting back to them.
Don’t dwell on what happened at work
When you’ve had a bad day, don’t recount all the details of it to others when you arrive home. That just magnifies the negative feelings. Just say, ‘I had a bad day, but now I’m home, looking forward to enjoying a great evening with you.’ And let it go. Be in the moment. Do not allow the bad day to ruin an enjoyable evening.
Create a ritual that helps you transition between work and personal life
To help transition your mindset from work-mode to relax-mode engage in a few rituals that allow you to leave work at work. For example, on your way home listen to a podcast about your interests outside of work like fitness, health and well-being. With these rituals you celebrate your hard work of the day and immerse myself in the other activities that you enjoy.
Change your clothes to change your mindset
Segment my wardrobe — quite strictly — into three categories: play, work corporate, and work at home. If a ‘play’ outfit crosses over to ‘work,’ it never comes back. You can’t ever again wear a ‘work’ outfit for ‘play’ and expect to feel relaxed. Switch from ‘work’ to ‘play’ clothes the second you come home.
Put yourself in control
As more people work remotely or stay available to colleagues after hours online, leaving work at work is becoming a thing of the past. But this doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t and can’t create clear boundaries between work and life. To do this, you need to have a clear line of sight to what is on your plate, where your attention is needed, and what actions you need to take to move the ball forward. When you feel in control, you’re more likely to permit yourself to take time off to unwind or shift focus to other things and people that matter. Try adopting these five: Collate (create to-do lists often and diligently); eliminate (clear the decks); automate (put routine tasks on autopilot), delegate (let other people on your team do those things you can’t do or don’t do well); and create, accelerate, celebrate (doing the things that you do at your best!).
Leave your work supplies at work
When I leave work, leave the building with only your keys and phone. It’s a wonderful feeling to exit the building with just your personal belongings allowing yourself to be free of work.
Limit your notifications — and not just the ones from work
It is important to recognize how non-work communications and obligations that we’re expected to respond to 24/7 also contribute to a stressful life. Consider turning off all notifications for Facebook and other social media sites.
Exercise to stop the post-work stewing
Remember to exercise after work. This also helps to avoid ruminating and replaying the events of the workday. Physical action helps to stop the noise and shift mental gears so you can be present for the moment and not be thinking about your work.
When you know a stressful stretch is ahead, don’t keep it to yourself
Your stress often becomes your family’s stress. Be mindful and warn them if something stressful s coming up at work. Let your family know what is happening so they can give me space to handle your challenges. Simply tell your family when you need time to work, and when that time is up, give your energy to family that needs you. Teach them to do the same for you.
Keep your calls separate
Consider two phones and not giving many co-workers your personal cell phone number or installing your work email account on it. That way, you don’t have to actively, consciously avoid the work stuff to communicate with family and friends.
Create a workday, even if you don’t have a traditional schedule
Commit to a regular workday, especially when working from home. As much as possible avoid family and social activities during your scheduled worktime and vice versa.