Almost everyone gets a little stressed at work on occasion. But for some people, it’s more serious, and they experience legitimate job burnout. Employee relations expert Dana Wilkie writes in SHRM that this is a problem that’s at “epidemic proportions” with employees citing unfair compensation, unreasonable workload and excessive overtime hours as the three main contributors. Here are some of the common signs of being burnt out at work and what you can do to alleviate stress to find your work-life balance.
Feeling on edge and being quick to lash out at others over little things are classic signs of job burnout. You may find you’re also increasingly impatient with your fellow employees and customers.
Reduced Mental Performance
One of the side effects of chronic stress is difficulty thinking and concentrating. Once you hit “a wall,” your brain shuts down to a certain extent, and you may have difficulty maintaining normal brain function.
It’s also easy to feel sapped of strength. Whenever your mind and body aren’t given enough time to relax and recharge, you can bet you’ll have a low energy level. And this can cause you to always feel drained.
The Mayo Clinic mentions some of the specific health complications that can stem from job burnout including:
- High cholesterol
- Type 2 diabetes
A General Lack of Job Satisfaction
It’s normal to have an off day here and there. But if you’re extremely unhappy with your job or feel “trapped,” then you’re likely experiencing burnout. It’s especially problematic when it spills over to other areas of your life.
Tips for Finding a Better Work-Life Balance
If this sounds like an issue you’re dealing with, you’ll want to take immediate action to fix it. Here are some ideas:
- Unplug from the workplace during your off hours (e.g., avoid checking emails)
- Speak with your manager about your schedule (Try to reduce your hours or see if telecommuting options are available)
- Seek out relaxing activities during your time off (e.g., reading, hiking, meditation, etc.)
- Get enough sleep
- Exercise routinely
- Eat healthier
If none of these ideas seem to help, it may just be time to seek a different job. If you feel your current situation is beyond repair, this may be the most logical move.
Job burnout isn’t something to take lightly and can really take a toll on you long term. But knowing how to handle it should help lower your stress and give you a healthier work-life balance.
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