Work or job burnout, simply put, is a state of exhaustion by workers because of prolonged and excessive stress. It can happen you feel overwhelmed with work. Over time, because of the constant demands of your job, you start to lose motivation.
The passion and inspiration that led you to take on the challenges of your work in the first place are gone, or at least it feels that way.
The “Three R”Approach
According to Helpguide.org International, you can fight burnout with the simple “Three R” approach.
Beware of the warning signs of burnout. The danger of burnout is that it sneaks up on you. Before you know it…
Your productivity suffers
You feel helpless, hopeless, and resentful
You think you’re underpaid and under-appreciated
You feel exhausted all the time.
You constantly complain of headaches, colds, etc.
You can’t concentrate.
You lose interest in social activities.
You deny having these negative feelings.
These are just a few of the signs that are more likely to appear during the early stages of burnout. If left without intervention, the long-term effects can spill over to all facets of your life, not just the workplace. The negative feelings and thoughts associated with it can affect your family and social life. Your body also becomes more susceptible to diseases.
Now, this part is easier said than done, especially when the one who suffers from it already feels hopeless. Reversing the effect of work burnout will actually feel like a waste of energy. Accepting that you feel “burnt out” is the first step in reversing the damage it already caused.
Identify and cut off the source of stress. Take a moment to ask yourself what’s causing you so much stress at work. Is it your boss, a co-worker, your workload, or the working environment? Is it worth all the stress? Determine and reevaluate your priorities.
Evaluate your options. Of course, quitting is not an always an option for many. So talk about your concerns with your supervisor. Consider possible solutions and suggest ways to get rid of stressors.
Work less or work differently. Change the way you do things. Work less by eliminating unnecessary tasks, taking breaks, and asking other people for some help.
Take a vacation. When the burnout is severe (as in you’d rather vomit than touch anything related to your work), take a long vacation. This doesn’t just serve as a way to re-energize yourself but it’ll also help you to not hate the job that you love.
Seek help right away. It is essential to seek help and begin positive lifestyle changes as soon as you recognize the signs of burnout. Take advantage of employee assistance programs, get things off your chest by talking (not complaining) to a trusted co-worker, friend, or family member.
It’s not enough to simply reverse the effects of burnout. You also have to build the resilience against it. It’s not just a one-time thing. You have to take steps to keep yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally fit so you are less susceptible to experience it again.
Get more sleep and exercise. This one’s no-brainer. Getting enough z’s will lead to a happier disposition. Being cranky due to lack of sleep doesn’t help your fight against burnout. Exercise prevents you from feeling sluggish and tired all day as well.
Eat healthier. Take control of your body, or what’s going inside it at least. The healthier your diet it, the better you’ll feel about your body. This doesn’t mean drastic changes. Instead start small by getting rid any unhealthy food you’ve gotten used to one at a time.
Adjust your attitude. Speaking of feeling better, curb your cynicism at work. Improve your outlook by rediscovering the things about your job that you find enjoyable. You can also start a personal project revolving around something you’re passionate about outside work. Don’t set a deadline and just enjoy working on it.
Employers Should Be Concerned
Workers experiencing burnout can become a liability to any business. The decrease in productivity along with probable disruption in workplace can affect teamwork and may reflect badly on the company culture.
As such, while employees should protect themselves by living healthier and getting enough personal time, employers must be proactive in dealing with the issue. Ensuring employee health and job satisfaction through accessible assistance programs, regular breaks, or occasional recreational activities can go a long way in avoiding high turnover rates and absenteeism.
An effective HR strategy can help assure that your employees enjoy a good work-life balance. Contact us today and allow us to help you plan a strategy based on your business goals.