How To Deal With Burnout At Work and Why You Should

Dealing with burnout at work

10 Ways to get over job burnout

Do you want to know how to deal with burnout at work? You have no desire to do anything and you are stressed and anxious? Maybe you have physical or emotional exhaustion that also includes a sense of loss of personal identity and reduced accomplishment.

In other words, it is called job burnout. What are the signs of burnout at work and how to deal with that is what we will present to you here in this article.

Burnout can be considered as a mental health issue, let’s be clear it is not a mental illness, it is just an issue that you can easily deal it.

Burnout is more likely when employees:

  • Never feel that what are they doing is enough
  • Feel incompetent
  • Feel unappreciated for their work effort
  • Expect too much of themselves
  • Have unreasonable demands placed upon them

What are the signs of burnout at work?

Here are the most prevalent and common symptoms of burnout at work.

1. You are exhausted

An overall feeling of exhaustion and fatigue are common symptoms of burnout at work. You aren’t feeling just physically exhausted but you have drained emotionally too.

If getting out of bed every morning and going to work is a more demanding challenge than before, yes you have a burnout problem.

2. You can’t get excited about work anymore

One of the most important signs of burnout at work is a lack of excitement and interest in what you are doing.

The projects that used to make you feel fulfilled now leave you feeling depleted. You don’t get the same level of satisfaction and this attitude of indifference can spread in the other areas of your life out of the office.

Or if we simplify these, if you are struggling to muster up even a shred of enthusiasm for things that used to energize you, it is a red flag for burnout.

3. Your performance is low

The disinterest in daily tasks often leads to poor performance. People who are burnt out don’t care enough to do things well.

This is one of the biggest warning signs of burnout at work. You know what and how to do it, but your performance is low and you don’t know what is happening.

It is frustrating, but yes it is one of the signs of burnout.

4. You are dealing with physical ailments

Physical complaints that have been reported for burnout include:

  • Headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Chest Pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Dizziness
  • Gastrointestinal pain

Of course, there could be another explanation for these physical issues, but if you combine them with the emotional changes mentioned above they might serve as a physical indicator of your burnout state.

Now when we know the signs of burnout at work it is time to ask another question. How to deal with it?

Overcome burnout at work

Dealing with a burnout at work

1. Find a release

Burnout can build and lead to stress. If you don’t release the pressure that is building up you may crack emotionally or that can lead to other health issues.

The best thing you can do to relieve stress is physical activity. The way you release your aggression or frustration doesn’t matter. It matters to find a way to release stress.

The difference between pressure and control is stress. People are giving their best performance when they are under some pressure. But if you keep the pressure and take away the control the result is stress.

The best thing to do is to focus on the things that you can do, not on the things that you can’t do.

Even small steps can increase your confidence and can help to make a difference.

2. Get support

No one can handle all problems alone, not even you. Seek help and advice, a shared problem is a problem halved.

The solution to the hardest problem can magically appear over a cup of coffee with someone you trust.

3. Take a break

Talk to your manager and take a beak. Not for a day or two. You need a complete total cut-off work. You need a vacation.

Explain why you need that time off and why you will be better after you get back. It is recommended to be off for a minimum of two weeks.

It means no office calls, no email. Go somewhere that is the complete opposite of work and that should be a place that makes you happy.

If you don’t have any vacation days left, go on unpaid break. It will help you. You can earn money, but you can’t earn health.

It’s important that you don’t lie to yourself. If you lie to yourself, you end up with burnout.

Patrick Pichette

4. Find purpose in what you do

It is so hard if you find yourself stuck in the middle of the corporate ladder. But you must find meaning and purpose in what you do. This is what people who survive and thrive in life do.

Focus on how your work is helping you to build a better life for yourself and your family.

You make a difference to your customers and colleagues, so celebrate doing that as well as you can.

5. Take a break from caffeine and alcohol

A lot of people deal with stress and lack of energy by dosing up on coffee, energy drinks, alcohol, or junk food.

While these can sometimes help, you can quickly become dependent on them. Especially when you are using them to cope with growing stress at work. Dependency leads to addiction, which we can agree is not good.

You might think that you need them to cal your nerves or just a quick energy boost, you are wrong. Do some other things, replace these bad habits with something else like taking a walk, engaging in a hobby, or simply just sit quietly.

How to deal with burnout
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6. Stay focused

A US Government report found that office workers are productive for on average two hours and fifty-six minutes per day. The rest of the time is wasted on social media or interruptions.

For the next hour set clear goals: avoid distractions and interruptions, focus 100 % and then reward yourself with a break. It is simple work, rest, and repeat. But many times is too hard to do this.

To avoid burnout at work you must after an hour of hard work reward yourself with a break.

7. Ask for different responsibilities

Burnout can not only happen from overwork, but also from working on the same few clients for months at a time. Talk to your manager about taking on different responsibilities. As the old saying goes, “a change is as good as a rest”.

If you are good at your job the company will not want to lose you and will want to help you feel better at work.

8. Care for your health

You don’t need to complete a marathon before breakfast. You can do simple things that can help you to stay in shape and avoid burnout at work.

Simple as getting off the bus one stop early and walk, ditch the lift if you are going two floors either way. Avoid eating too much junk food at work.

9. Take advantage of the FMLA Laws

Family and Medical Leave Act, FMLA is a federal law that guarantees certain employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave each year without the threat of job loss.

It is often used for the birth of a child or significant illness, but mental stress or severe burnout can qualify as a reason to use FMLA protection.

See a doctor or psychologist, explain what is happening, and get written proof that you are unable to perform your duties to a satisfactory level due to your stress, burnout, and anxiety.

Yes, the leave is unpaid, so you will have to weigh that against the amount of time off you take. In many cases, four weeks is more than enough to recharge and get back to your old self.

10. Get plenty of sleep, exercise, and eat well

When we get stressed we look for ways to soothe and comfort ourselves. For many of us that involve collapsing on the sofa to watch TV, eating fast food, or drinking alcohol.

These activities rarely cure burnout and can make things worse than they are.

Instead, start eating healthier food and create an exercise plan. Get a good eight hours of sleep every night. A few weeks or months of these and you will see the changes. You will feel happier and calmer.

Extra reading for you: If you feel, annoyed, overwhelmed, sluggish, and tense at the beginning of a working week, you are probably dealing with a case of the Monday blues. Find out here how to beat the Monday blues (ultimate guide + infographic).

Dealing with burnout at work

Final words for dealing with burnout at work

Burnout at work is hard to recognize and it doesn’t go away on its own. Identifying and then addressing burnout requires conscious thought and effort.

If you notice some of these signs of burnout at work mentioned in this article you must take action. Dealing with burnout is not easy but if you are aware of those congratulations you’ve made the first step.

Burnout is serious and has negative effects on your mental, emotional, and physical health. Do whatever you can to focus, relax, recharge, and find a way to maintain a good life/work balance.

Without a good balance, you will continue to struggle more.

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