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Can’t Turn Off Work Mode On The Weekend? Research Says Your Personality Matters

Can’t Turn Off Work Mode On The Weekend? Research Says Your Personality Matters

In today’s society, work is becoming a seven-day-a-week proposition. Mobile technology is blurring the lines between work and leisure. Working on weekends has become the new normal. People are compelled to spend their off time working in order to stay on top of their work, catch up on items from the previous week or get a head start on the next week’s tasks.

Business Insider Executive Editor Joe Weisenthal recently wrote an article about this inability an alarming amount of people have to unplug. He believes that two days of weekend is too much for many people:

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 “It seems that totally disconnecting for two days is too excruciating for a lot of people, so that by Sunday morning they’re eager to start getting back into the swing of things.”

In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 35 percent of employed Americans work at least one day on the weekend.

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Bureau of Labor Statistics

    Decades of research continue to support the notion that the current 40-hour workweek is indeed, the sweet spot. It further shows that working overtime and weekends can lead to serious negative effects on health (mental and physical), relationships, and overall productivity. Over time, working long hours can increase your risk of depression, heart attack, and heart disease.

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    Some people are more susceptible to working weekends than others

    Why is it that some people have no problem unplugging on weekends and return to work Monday morning disturbingly bright, chipper and well rested? While others drag in from a weekend of working looking, tired, haggard and sometimes physically ill?

    Research suggests that your ability to unplug is tied to your personality–specifically your tendency towards optimistic or pessimistic thinking.

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    Jennifer Ragsdale, a psychologist at the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma, conducted a study to examine the three-way interactions between weekend activities (low-effort and work-related) and both positive trait affectivity or PA (positive outlook, cheerfulness and enthusiasm) and negative trait affectivity–NA (Anger, disgust, fear and frustration) on the ability for people to recover from work week stressors. The study found that– generally speaking, positive affectivity (and negative affectivity) greatly influence one’s opinions and decisions and dictates how they respond to and handle stress. A brain with a tendency towards NA will struggle with the ability to detach, relax and experience a sense of mastery.

    People with a higher NA tend to be more easily overwhelmed, prone to anxiety and are unable to relieve stress at work. They have the tendency to work on weekends and – even worse – while on vacation. Scores of individuals are under the false illusion that if they work at home, on nights and weekends, they can reduce stress at work and stay ahead of the curve. Studies show that the opposite is actually true. For people with higher NA more work equates to more stress and more negative thoughts and feelings.

    Workaholic I
      Photo Credit: LaurMG. on Flickr

      Learning how to relieve stress at work is key to taking a break

      First, try to identify your primary stressors. Are you overwhelmed by the amount of work? Is the work labor intensive and time sensitive? If so, working on time management and learning how to allocate your time during each day may be key to accomplishing your tasks in a timely manner while still preserving your free time. Attacking your primary stressors by having a plan and being proactive can assist in counteracting your brain’s natural NA tendencies.

      Another major key in ending the cycle of never ending work is to understand that you are more productive when you take periodic breaks. Research is definitively on this point. Your brain needs to completely disengage from work related activity periodically. It will reduce your stress and make you better in all areas of your life.

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      Denise Hill

      Speech Writer/Senior Editor

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      Last Updated on June 18, 2019

      40 Ways to Achieve Peace Of Mind and Inner Calm

      40 Ways to Achieve Peace Of Mind and Inner Calm

      Do you have racing thoughts and find yourself constantly worrying? An anxious mind is truly distressing.

      The good news is, there’re simple things you can do to calm your thought.

      If you want to achieve peace of mind and inner calm, try these 40 simple powerful ways:

      1. Listen to Music

      Studies have found that relaxing music can help kids with ADHD to be calmer and focus. But it doesn’t matter what genre of music you want to listen to, as long as you enjoy it and it makes you feel relaxed.

      Music is food for the soul and an instant way to gain peace of mind.

      2. Deep Breathing

      When you focus on your breathing, your mind’s attention is drawn to the life-enhancing process of drawing in air and exhaling.

      Take five long, deep breaths and focus on your lungs and diaphragm as you do this. This is a quick and easy way to instantly feel calm.

      Here’re also 5 Breathing Exercises for Anxiety (Simple and Calm Anxiety Quickly).

      3. Go for a Walk

      Getting out in the fresh air can do you a world of good and promote peace of mind. Take a break and get the blood pumping – especially when the sun is shining.

      4. Enjoy Nature

      Too much concrete is never a good thing. Spending time in nature can actually make you feel younger, happier. Here’s why.

      Spend time away from the city. Listen to the birds singing and enjoy the peace and tranquility.

      5. Play with a Pet

      Having a pet to play with is a great way to de-stress. Touch is a powerful sense and can ease tension and promote peace of mind.

      6. Declutter

      Have regular clear-outs. Clutter can add to feelings of tension and a clean, clear home allows a clearer, more peaceful mind.

      Take a look at this article and learn How to Declutter Your Mind to Sharpen Your Brain and Fall Asleep Faster.

      7. Acceptance

      Acceptance is crucial for peace of mind. Accepting that there are few guarantees in the world and learning to tolerate uncertainty is a huge leap in the peace-of-mind stakes. Differentiate between what you can and cannot control.

      8. Mindfulness

      When we are mindful, we are fully present in the moment and acutely aware of our five senses: touch, taste, sight, hearing and smell.

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      Engage your senses. This leaves less time for your mind to worry and think about “what ifs.”

      Here you can learn about The Power of Mindfulness.

      9. Self Love

      The more we like ourselves, the greater our peace of mind. We accept ourselves more and feel at ease in the world, no matter what situation we find ourselves in. We experience less insecurity and as a result, our inner peace is heightened.

      Start trying these 30 Ways To Practice Self-Love And Be Good To Yourself.

      10. Be True to You

      This is another vital component of peace of mind. When we practice congruency, we behave similarly to the way we feel and think. When the way we see ourselves and the way the world sees us is the same, we are practicing congruency.

      Problems arise when we see ourselves one way (for example, as a loving mother) but behave in ways that are at odds with how we would like to see ourselves (for example, neglect our children because we are too busy). Finding ways to keep our inner ideals and the way we behave similar is one of the keys to peace of mind.

      Find out How to Be True to Yourself and Live the Life You Want.

      11. Sense of Humor

      Laugh a lot. The world is instantly a better place when you can see the funny side of life. Laughter is a great antidote for stress and releases hormones that help us relax.

      12. Love Unconditionally

      When you don’t expect anything back, it makes it easier to love without fear. When we love with conditions attached, our unmet expectations can create inner turmoil and feelings of resentment. Insecurities destroy peace of mind.

      13. Go for Regular Health Checks

      It pays to keep checks on your health and look after yourself. Letting ourselves go can indicate a lack of self-respect, and this in turn will affect the way we see the world and the way others interact with us. Be kind to yourself and make the most of what you have.

      14. Take Stock

      Every now and then, it’s a good idea to check whether you’re happy with the quality of your life. Do you like your job? Your relationship? Are you on the right track? Make adjustments if necessary to restore peace of mind.

      15. Have Goals

      This ties in with number 14. Goals keep us going in the right direction and give us a sense of purpose. Make your goals SMART: How to Set SMART Goal to Make Lasting Changes in Life

      16. Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously

      This relates to number 11. Learn to be more flexible in your approach to life. The more rigid our thinking is, the easier it is to experience situations that contradict our rigid ideas.

      17. Live in the Moment

      Instead of worrying about the past or panicking about the future, really enjoy the NOW. It’s all we have — this moment in time.

      When we live in the present, the concerns of the past and future can’t worry us.

      Here’re some tips on How to Live in the Moment and Stop Worrying About the Past or Future.

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      18. Worry Less

      We apparently have somewhere between 30,000 – 75,000 thoughts per day, of which 80% are random “nonsense.”

      Learn to “shelve” worrying by reminding yourself that most of your worries are unproductive and remove any chance of peace of mind.

      Some advice for you who worry often: How to Worry Less: 90% of What You Fear Won’t Happen

      19. Be Assertive

      You have as much right to be here and to have an opinion as anyone else. When we become passive or submissive, we do ourselves a disservice.

      Being assertive isn’t about your needs ahead of others (aggressive) or their needs ahead of yours (passive). Rather, it is about compromise —  a “win-win” situation.

      Learn How to Be Assertive and Stand up for Yourself the Smart Way.

      20. Speak Your Mind

      Don’t be afraid to say what you’re thinking. This goes hand in hand with being assertive.

      Ask for what you want in life. If you don’t ask, you don’t get.

      21. Enjoy “Me-Time”

      Time out is important. A little bit of selfish time to treat yourself or do exactly as you please sets you up for taking on the constant demands of life. Balance in life is crucial.

      22. Frolic

      The free online dictionary describes the word “frolic” as:

      “To behave playfully and uninhibitedly; romp.”

      All work and no play will stress anyone out. Make time for things you enjoy. Try to inject fun into situations that aren’t particularly enjoyable. Approach life with a playful attitude. When did you last let the child in you come out to play?

      23. Let It Go

      There are some things that you just cannot change, no matter how hard you try. Know when to cut your losses and detach (Just like Elsa does!)

      When you start to let go of your past, these 10 things will happen.

      24. Resist Guilt

      Guilt is a negative emotion that removes peace of mind. Although it can motivate us (in the wrong way), it is still a toxic emotion.

      Challenge the reasons for your guilt to make sure you aren’t placing unnecessary pressure on yourself.

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      25. Adopt an Attitude of Gratitude

      Focusing on all the things in our lives that we are grateful for promotes peace of mind and reminds us that there are always positives. Sometimes we just have to nudge our awareness.

      Try these 40 Simple Ways To Practice Gratitude.

      26. See Failure as a Learning Curve

      Failure has such negative connotations, but actually, everyone fails. How can you improve or learn anything if you never fail?

      A healthy attitude towards failure encourages bravery. It’s not you that is the failure, instead it is what you tried that failed. There is a big difference.

      27. Connect with Others

      One of the true joys of life is sharing life with others and knowing that others “get” you. We feel less alone and feeling understood allows a fantastic sense of well-being.

      28. Test Your Limits

      You’ll never know your true potential if you always stay in your comfort zone. As the old saying goes, it is better to look back and regret what you did than regret all those things you wish you’d tried.

      Learn to step out of your comfort zone: 10 Ways To Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone And Overcome Your Fear

      29. Find Positive Outlets for Negative Emotions

      Sports, online forums, like-minded people, hobbies…whatever takes your fancy. Suppressing negative emotions can lead to ill health. Release tension and frustration in a pro social way and feel a whole lot happier.

      30. Slow Down

      Why does everything need to be accomplished today? Often, we place unrealistic pressure on ourselves when there is no need to.

      Challenge your impatience, be mindful and enjoy life in the moment.

      31. Challenge Your “Shoulds” and “Musts”

      Self-induced pressure never leads to inner tranquility or peace of mind. Replace “should” with “could” and live life more on your own terms.

      32. Be Kind

      It’s free and it makes a difference. When we show kindness, it gives us an inner boost, too.

      You can try these 29 Ways to Carry Out Random Acts of Kindness Every Day.

      33. Don’t Compare

      The more we compare, the more we lose ourselves.

      Forget what everyone else is doing or saying. What do YOU want? We all have our own paths to follow, and we are all learning and going through life at our unique pace.

      Focus on your own journey and lose the stress of comparing yourself to what you think is going on in the lives of others. This is a surefire way to eliminate peace of mind.

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      34. Affirmations

      Talk to yourself positively by using affirmations. A good example of one that encourages peace of mind is: “No matter what comes my way, I will find a way to get through it.”

      Believe in yourself and remind yourself regularly that you will be okay.

      Need some more inspirations to affirm yourself? Here’re 10 Positive Affirmations for Success that will Change your Life.

      35. Save a Little Money as Often as You Can

      Putting money aside is always a good idea. If you can afford to save money regularly, do it. Start up a regular debit each month, and you won’t even realize it’s gone.

      36. Less Is More

      Money buys choice, but it doesn’t buy us the happiness we crave. Be content with the simpler things in life — that’s where the real long-lasting joy and peace of mind comes from.

      37. Perspective

      Always  keep your eye on the bigger picture. Will you feel this way next week, or a year from now? Will your current experience of life seem as important?

      More often than not, you will be just fine. Foster peace of mind by maintaining perspective in life.

      38. Monitor Your Thoughts

      Our thoughts can make or break our quality of life. Make sure to choose thinking that works for you.

      Talk to yourself as you would a best friend. Self-loathing serves no purpose and will undoubtedly extract joy from your life.

      39. Stand up for What You Believe In

      Whether it’s protecting animals or helping those less fortunate than yourself, follow your heart and your passion. Fight the urge to fit in and do what’s expected.

      When you change yourself to suit others, you give away your peace of mind.

      40. Get Enough Sleep

      When we’re tired and grumpy, nothing goes smoothly. Get eight hours of sleep per night and regenerate your body.

      Final Thoughts

      The most important ways to achieve peace of mind involve being true to yourself, accepting that life is uncertain and watching your thinking. Many of us mentally “torture” ourselves daily with the things we tell ourselves.

      Trust your thoughts less, pay less attention to the negative ones and focus on what you are thankful for in life, and you’ll be well on your way to inner peace of mind.

      Featured photo credit: sean Kong via unsplash.com

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