An unsurprising 1 in 5 people feel that they are unable to manage the stress and pressures of the workplace. Are you one of the unlucky ones?
Being burnt out is basically like depleting your internal battery to the point where a quick 20 minute recharge isn’t enough to make you feel fulfilled again. The official definition of burnout is “a physical, emotional and/or mental exhaustion, accompanied by decreased motivation, lowered performance and negative attitudes towards oneself and others.”
Burnout doesn’t go away on its own without addressing the underlying issues that cause it. While there is no singular cause for burnout, it can be caused by a lack of control in your life, unclear job expectations and job security, working in a helping profession such as for the NHS, a lack of support or an imbalance of your work to home life. There’s many other reasons too.
Common signs of burnout are often confused with anxiety and depression and can include feeling drained, tired, helpless, trapped, detached, overwhelmed and alone. It can also give you a negative outlook on your life and career as well as self doubt and procrastination. Here’s some of our handy tips on how to best avoid burnout:
Many of us forget to use our annual leave on a regular basis when we don’t have big holidays planned out. While it won’t cure burnout, being able to allow yourself to have a much-needed break can make all the difference. Even if you decide to spend your annual leave at home on the sofa flicking through Netflix rather than planning a big holiday away, a holiday is a holiday.
I’m sure you’ve heard this one a million times before, but that just shows how important it is! A lack of sleep can be detrimental to all aspects of your health, mental and physical. Make sure to switch off your phone – and your brain – about an hour before you intend to go to sleep. This is to allow yourself some alone time without the distraction of constant notifications and the phone’s bright light keeping you alert.
While you will be paid for overtime, your mind and body will also be paying for a few extra hours at work. More time at the workplace means less time to relax your mind. Prioritise tasks throughout the day so that by the end of the day, the tasks you have left to complete can wait till tomorrow.
Whether that be time with your family & friends, for your hobbies or simply to relax and unwind, taking this time apart from your everyday life can help reset your brain before another big task. If you struggle finding something that makes you happy, or your friends & family aren’t available, it is always good to try something new. A pottery class? Painting? Reading a book? There are many hobbies out there, they don’t have to all be creative ones.
Asking for help is never a sign of weakness. You might have been given too much work to do for one person or you might need someone to help you with your tasks while you’re burnout. Seeing a therapist or mental health professional can help validate your feelings and discover new ways to help dig yourself out of this. You are only one person, you can’t be expected to do everything.