The alarm goes off. You hit the snooze button. It’s Monday morning and you wake up thinking, “Why should I bother going to work? It’s Ground Hog Day. I just am so over it, I am going to chuck a sickie today.
If you find yourself saying and doing this one too many times, you just might just be feeling a tad burned out. Everyone strives for a perfect work life balance – but it is easy to get caught up in a mountain of paperwork, back to back meetings, constant deadlines and coping with life/work in general.
What is burnout?
Help Guide says burnout is emotional, mental and physical exhaustion caused by too much stress.
Symptoms of burnout include:
- feeling overwhelmed
- feeling unable to meet demands
- feeling as if you can’t give any more
- feeling helpless, hopeless, cynical, trapped, defeated, detached and resentful
- reduced productivity
- low energy
- lack of motivation
- disliking work you used to enjoy
What causes burnout?
In most cases, your job is the primary cause of burnout. Employees who are overworked and feel undervalued are at a huge risk of burnout. Monotonous and unchallenging jobs can also cause this. Stress, overloaded schedules, lack of rest, taking care of the kids, financial pressures, ailing parents, working two jobs, unsupportive relationships – the list goes on.
Adrenal burnout can be the best thing that happens to a person. It is a wakeup call. A major part of your life is out of balance. Addressing burnout is often the beginning of exploration of life at a deeper level from a more spiritual perspective as well. For help along the way to taking back your life, you may want to read Dr. Wilson’s book, Adrenal Fatigue: The 21st Century Stress Syndrome.
So, how can one avoid burnout? Balance is the key. Sure, it’s easier said than done but with some effort, you can have a burnout-free life.
1. Stay connected.
Family and friends are so important in one’s well-being. Regularly touch base with your family and friends by catching up for a walk, or via phone for a chat. Coffee dates, watching movies, or lunch together can spell a whole lot of difference to your emotions.
2. Schedule a holiday
Gone are the days when employees work non-stop, spending holidays at work, and even missing family milestones in the name of one’s career. A happy and productive employee is one who understands that his /her job is not the end-all and be-all of his life. Call the travel agent and go on holiday, use up your sick days, ask for a temporary leave-of-absence—anything that allows you to recharge your batteries outside of the workplace
3. Pursue a hobby.
A hobby is great thing to do because it is something you love to do and it doesn’t involve your work. Whether it’s knitting, reading for pleasure, fishing, golf or bushwalking. A hobby gives you something to look forward to after a stressful day or week at work.
4. Stay healthy.
Make sure you eat nutritious meals and have plenty of physical activity. Exercise releases endorphins, which are also called ‘happy hormones.” Eating right also helps prevent you from getting sick, getting adequate amounts of sleep and exercising regularly is so important.
5. Pay it forward.
Some of the happiest people I know reach out to the less fortunate. You can volunteer in your church or your town’s soup kitchen or street bear. You can donate old clothes or other items that are still in good condition but you no longer use. Paying it forward gives you the perspective that everything is not that bad and your life is actually pretty good.
6. Ask for help.
Remember that no one is an island and we need all the help we can get. Even if you’re the resourceful type, don’t be tempted to do it all alone. You’ll be surprised at how helpful other people can be. All you need to do is just ask.
7. Avoid becoming a workaholic– Burnout is guaranteed if you are determined to work around the clock, Determine a time that you will leave the office every day and stick to it
8.Sleep. Get 7 or 8 hours sleep each night. It is very difficult to work all day if you are not getting enough sleep.
9. Create a to-do list… and stick to it. The to-do list is a time saver for the time-strapped professional. But make sure you stick to it. Make a list of all your responsibilities and build a schedule around them.
10. Take a break from technology and social media. Set a time each day when you completely disconnect. Put away your laptop, turn off your phone, stop checking email and get off Facebook. .
11. Talk to a Professional. If your company has an EAP (Employee Assistant Program) take advantage of it, which includes confidential counseling, or even workshops to handle work pressures. Seek professional support and assistance to help you deal with your stresses
12. Get a new job. Last, but not least, you’re in a career that you’ve discovered isn’t for you. You hate doing what you do and that’s causing you to experience burnout. If you can afford to quit your job then you should consider it. If not, check out Lifestyle Careersto find a new job.
No one ever said that work is easy but you don’t need to be bogged down by it. Are you on the verge of burnout? What do you do to avoid it?