Some people are lucky enough to work in industries where the product or service they are dealing with has little bearing on their real lives. My management team aren’t really in danger of stumbling across a motivational or corporate speaker in their living rooms. But, if you work in IT or technology there is no getting away from what you do from nine to five.
Whether you are on the shop floor of Apple, or are a programmer for a huge technology conglomerate you will know that when you get home it can feel next to impossible to switch off from the office.
From your partner needing IT advice, to shows on the TV looking at tech trends, these triggers serve as a constant reminder of what you left behind at the office.
So what can you do to ensure you don’t get tech burn out, how can you ensure that your time at home is really ‘at home’ and that you remain productive and passionate about what you do at the office?
I have created a simple tool that I teach to my coaching clients as well as to corporate audiences around the world, including to top technology companies such as Microsoft & Fuji Xerox. I don’t mind sharing with you that we have achieved amazing results.
The Third Space
Well firstly what is the Third Space?
Each of us makes many micro-transitions throughout our day; where we move between different roles, environments and tasks.
I call each of these transitions ‘spaces’; the 1st space is the role/environment/task you are currently in, the 2nd space is the role/environment/task you are about to transition into.
Constantly moving between these spaces can mean we spend our day carrying baggage from one encounter to the next – which means by the time we get home our mind is all over the place.
As the your day at the offices comes to a close I urge you to make use of the following three steps in order to make sure you remain present and enjoy your down time.
- Reflect – Ask yourself the following questions; What went well today? What did I achieve? How did I improve?
- Rest - Do something that focuses your mind on one thing that relaxes you. Eg. Suduko on the bus, reading a book on the train, listening to music in the car, something unrelated to the environment you just left behind.
When you arrive at your front door, or perhaps just before you are about to catch up with a friend or partner put the following step into play.
- Reset – Think about what your intention is for the next stage of your evening, what do I want to achieve? How do I want to show up? How do I want my partner to feel?
If you put these three stages into action over the next week I can promise you, you are going to see a marked improvement in how you feel going to the office, between meetings and coming home.
Technology has no doubt opened us up to an incredible world of opportunity but sometimes even the amazing people behind this thriving industry need to put their IT minds on power down, after all turning it off and turning it on again is the solution to most problems.