Work Burnout Prevention & Recovery Tips
Author: Michelle Richards Date Posted:11 January 2022
How To Manage Stress & Regain Passion For Your Job
Are you feeling disengaged, overwhelmed and drained? Feeling burned out at work is now such a widespread problem that some companies are at a crisis point. It commonly affects those of us who love our jobs and replaces joy and motivation with emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion.
If you start to find yourself easily frustrated, struggling with tasks, and lacking in confidence, you may well be starting to experience burnout. Work burnout is much more than feeling stressed out, and it can be dangerous to leave it unchecked. It can result in serious illness and have a devastating impact on our lives and relationships.
Realising you’re on the road to burnout means slowing down, focussing on self-care, and taking positive action. Learn how to recover from burnout, and you will not only start to love your work again but also how to enjoy your leisure time.
Understanding The Difference Between Burnout And Stress
Work burnout can often be caused by unrelenting stress, but it isn’t the same thing at all. Stress and pressure in small amounts can even be healthy, and many people seem to thrive on it. Managing stress in the workplace means keeping it that way. Too much stress involves too many ongoing pressures that take their toll mentally and physically. However, people feeling stressed can usually remain positive and believe they’ll feel better when they get everything under control.
Burnout is almost the opposite of stress. It leads to feelings of emptiness, complete exhaustion, and demotivation. People experiencing work burnout are often past caring about anything and can’t see any hope of a positive outcome. While you can recognise when you’re stressed, burnout can creep up on you without you noticing.
How To Avoid Burnout By Recognising The Warning Signs
Commonly, most of us experience some stressful times at work and even feel disillusioned and frustrated. But work burnout runs much deeper. Excessive stress can feel like drowning in workload and responsibilities; burnout is a feeling of empty hopelessness.
If you’re wondering how to stop burnout before it happens, try asking yourself these questions:
- Are there many more rough days at work than there are good ones?
- Do you feel you’re not working efficiently unless it’s at the last minute?
- Are you having difficulty focussing on your job or understanding what’s expected?
- Are you unusually low at the end of the weekend and dreading work?
- Do you experience headaches, stomach aches, or pains in your back?
- Are you finding it difficult to sleep or sleeping much more than normal?
- Are you disinterested in social activities and having fun on your time off?
- Do you try to avoid work and conversations with coworkers and your manager?
- Are you constantly thinking about walking out or quitting your job?
Preventing burnout in the workplace means recognising these warning signs and never underestimating your capacity to take action. Work burnout doesn’t just happen. You can always choose how to manage stress by studying what’s contributing to potential burnout. Then take preventative measures and make some new choices to help improve the areas you can.
Managing Stress And Preventing Burnout In The Workplace
It's equally important for management and HR staff to recognise employee burnout signs and develop strategies to build resistance or manage work-related pressures.
If it’s already gone too far, then it’s vital to acknowledge you or your staff have reached burnout point. Severe exhaustion caused by repeated stress can leave a person feeling weary, unable to complete simple tasks, and utterly disinterested in life.
Here are some valuable tips on how to manage stress and help to relieve the pressure:
Ask for help
Don’t be worried about reaching out for help at work. The phenomenon of burnout is well recognised, and your employer should work with you to reduce demanding workloads. It’s vital to express your needs and ask for assistance from friends, family and colleagues.
Slipping into burnout can be easy if your to-do list is always put ahead of your needs and you’re not paying attention to your feelings. Our emotions are potent indicators of exactly what’s important to us, so make sure you check in with yourself and practise mindfulness.
During the working day, ensure you take as many breaks as possible. This will not only make you feel better but can increase your productivity and clear your mind. Always use these times carefully, take a walk if you can, meditate, take a power nap, or read something inspirational.
Take time off
If you’re already suffering from work burnout, detaching yourself from the problem is the best way to recover properly. Taking a holiday is an ideal way of preventing burnout from causing irreparable damage to your career, and you may find you can completely re-energise yourself.
One of the 5 stages of burnout is a growing lack of interest in taking care of your physical and mental needs. Pay attention to basic needs, like regular water and food, gentle exercise, and social time. It also helps to treat yourself to a little pampering with your favourite things.
Understand your limits
Preventing job burnout means taking control of your time and not over-exerting yourself. It can be challenging to make decisions and easier to say ‘yes’ when you’re battling stress or anxiety. Be aware of your boundaries, and don’t take on anything you won’t have the energy to finish.
Take small wins
Two of the main symptoms of burnout are feelings of inadequacy and impotence. So, one of the ways to deal with stress is to build up your capability in other areas of your life. These can be small ’wins’ that make you feel good, like finishing a home project or taking a short course.
Set work limits
Due to modern technology, work can follow us everywhere, so try to keep a work/home divide and balance in your personal life. Promise yourself you won’t think about your job unless you’re at work and create some boundaries, too, like taking your work email off your personal devices.
Develop personal interests
Health and well-being in all areas of our lives are important factors too. Although burnout is classically work-related, each area impacts and can contribute to our stress levels. Having hobbies, positive outlets, and good social interaction lets us blow off steam in times of need.
Treat Yourself Gently With Love From The Hamper Emporium
If you’re feeling fazed, don’t try to push yourself through work burnout. Anyone who’s ever been there knows how serious it can be and how the effects wreak havoc on your home life and personal relationships. Never underestimate its impact, but do understand your own role in it and take action.
Even if you’re not in a stressful situation right now, preventing future burnout is a sensible course of action. Be proactive and build mental and physical resilience for how to manage stress. Make lifestyle and wellness your priorities and remember to practise self-care whenever you can!
If someone you love is showing signs of burnout, encourage them to take a break. While a relaxation self-care hamper is not a magic bullet or cure-all, it's a step in the right direction and will let them know that you care about their well-being.