It is no understatement in saying that a job takes up and should take up the majority of your life. It becomes an aspect in your life that at the same time, provides for and takes away your individual expression. Some graduates often pursue jobs that they have no experience in, while others build their whole life around preparing for a certain kind of job.
This is the social structure on which we have built our society. In both cases, however, there is a very high chance of just burning yourself out at some point in your career. This job burnout may be mental fatigue or plain boredom, but it usually turns up even for the most passionate and enthusiastic people. It usually arises due to a convergence of various unfavourable situations that ultimately affect your productivity in a work environment.
The dictionary definition of job burnout is the exhaustion of physical strength, emotional strength or motivation. The most popular reason for this phenomenon is stress and overwork, although there have been scenarios where a common lack of interest or imagination has caused burnout.
Symptoms that you are going through a job burnout –
Burnout is something that hits you even if your professional life is going well and you have a good relationship with your boss and your coworkers. Your employer is happy with you, and you are doing what you love, but one fine day, you could have a nagging feeling in your mind whenever you go to work. As each day progresses, this feeling only gains in prominence while you wonder what is going wrong. It silently drains your motivation to work and your creativity, leaving you to wonder where it went wrong.
Besides this stark lack of any impetus, you may also feel fatigued and uninspired at the best of times. Other major symptoms include increased irritability, anxiety attacks, lack of appetite or overeating and forgetfulness.
According to research by the American Psychological Association (APA), if allowed to progress, burnout could directly lead to more dangerous mental conditions such as depression and anxiety, slowly progressing into physical ailments such as a stroke or a heart attack. Therefore it is crucial to identify the symptoms and immediately start working on how to get through this situation since the result of and the underlying effects of burnout could prove costly.
Possible causes for job burnout –
Now let us look into some factors that have a history of contributing to job burnout.
- Lack of control over your job situation.
- Dysfunctional dynamics in the workplace.
- Lack of clarity regarding job expectations.
- Extreme work activity and pressure.
- Lack of a proper professional or personal network in the workplace.
- Work-life imbalance.
Ways in which you can prevent or fight the job burnout –
In the case of any problem, diagnosing the symptoms is the first step towards fighting it. Once you have understood the problem you have is job burnout, it becomes easier to resolve it. The earlier you diagnose the problem, the easier it is to find effective solutions to it. You must understand that there are effective methods that successfully deal with job burnout without going to the extreme length of quitting your job, which is not viable economically.
Taking effective action against burnout involves managing expectations and understanding the problem. After you have taken account of the issue, let us take a look at some popular methods which will help against burnout.
1. Taking a step back
With how the corporate work system is set up, overworking and stressing is a part of the daily schedule. In this work culture, it requires character and mental fortitude to be able to take a step back and take things slow. Leaving your work and overwhelming responsibilities even for a few days can pay dividends in the future. Even if you do not take days off, you should focus on relaxing and unwinding at night. A rest period from time to time rejuvenates body and mind and prepares you for work pressures.
2. Try to have a conversation with a difficult coworker.
Issues in the workplace may also involve individuals such as your boss, coworkers and customers. If you feel that some of these people make your work life difficult, a method to move on from this difficulty is to try to initiate a conversation with them that helps to understand the individual better. A simple discussion helps to establish a strong and productive working relationship.
3. Don’t hesitate to explore a new career.
If the job you have does not excite you or stimulate your creativity, it may be a viable option for you to try a change in your career. Before you explore a new frontier, you should try to plan and conduct a self-assessment to understand what field will suit you. Along with that, it is vital to assess other fields in which you could explore.
4. Try out a hobby
Taking your mind off of the pressure in the workplace is important to keep yourself fresh. You should focus on something that keeps you engaged and active without overworking you. Your hobby should be something that should act as a counterweight against work pressure.