Friday, March 20, 2015

Learning to Manage Burnout

Learning to Manage Burnout

Most demanding careers practically guarantee stress, but if there are feelings of complete exhaustion, inability to concentrate, or as though one is neglecting their own well-being, then one may be suffering from burnout.1 It's a very real condition that's easy to ignore, but quick detection and knowing what to do, can help fix the problem. Here’s how.

Burnout can be more than just extreme exhaustion. Not only is there lost of  interest in the work that causes burnt out in the first place, but lost of interest is in nearly every other aspect of someone’s life. Fun won't be fun, every little thing will be bothersome, and one will be unhappy without fully understanding why. Feeling this way will be a regular thing with no belief of there ever being an alternative or a solution.

Work-related causes of burnout2

  • Feeling like there is  little or no control over work
  • Doing work that’s unchallenging or monotonous
  • Working in a chaotic or high-pressure environment
  • Lack of recognition or rewards for good work
  • Unclear or overly demanding job expectations

Lifestyle causes of burnout2

  • Working too much, without enough time for relaxing and socializing
  • Being expected to be too many things to too many people
  • Taking on too many responsibilities, without enough help from others
  • Not getting enough sleep
  • Lack of close, supportive relationships

Personality traits can contribute to burnout2

  • Perfectionistic tendencies; nothing is ever good enough
  • Pessimistic view of oneself and the world
  • The need to be in control; reluctance to delegate to others
  • High-achieving, Type A personality

Once warning signs of impending burnout is recognized, remember that it will only get worse if it is ignored. But if these steps are taken to get your life back into balance, burnout can be prevented from turning into a full out breakdown.

  • Start the day with a relaxing ritual. Rather than rushing out of bed to get the day started, spend at least fifteen minutes meditating, journaling, or gentle stretches.1,2
  • Adopt healthy eating, exercising, and sleeping habits. Eating right, engaging in regular physical activity, and getting plenty of rest, can help give the energy and resilience needed to deal the demands of life and work.1,2
  • Set boundaries. Don’t overextend. Learn how to say “no” to requests that there isn't time for.  If this is difficult, remember that saying “no” allows one to say “yes” to the things that really want to be accomplished.1,2  
  • Take a daily break from technology. Set a time each day to truly disconnect. Put away the laptop, turn off the phone, and stop checking email. Plan an activity with friends or simply just enjoy the peace and quiet at a local park.1,2
  • Nourish your creative side. Creativity is a powerful antidote to burnout. Try something new, start a fun project, or resume a favorite hobby. Choose activities that have nothing to do with work.1,2
  • Learn how to manage stress. When one on the road to burnout, there may be a feeling of helplessness. People actually have more control over stress than they actually think. Learning how to manage stress can help regain balance between work and the rest of one’s life.1,2

Everyone experiences and handles burnout differently. If someone is dealing with burnout, its safe to say that they are not alone. Surround oneself with people that support them as well as  following these few tips talked about before are key to getting over the hump and getting back to enjoying life.


1 Dachis, A., Burnout Is Real: How to Identify and Address Your Burnout Problem. (2012, February 13). Retrieved from

2 Preventing Burnout: Signs, Symptoms, Causes, and Coping Strategies. (n.d). Retrieved from

No comments:

Post a Comment