Our daily lives can be incredibly stressful. It can be difficult to juggle the different facets of life and find a work life balance. Being overworked and overwhelmed may result in work burnout which causes physical and mental exhaustion. These effects may lead to physical and mental elements such as anxiety, depression, lack of motivation, insomnia, headaches, heart palpitations, and indigestion.
Within this article, five methods to help avoid work burnout will be provided and the causes of the condition will be explored and explained. This article will also provide additional resources that further explain work burnout and supply tools and tips to help alleviate symptoms.
Understanding work burnout, recognizing its signs and causes:
The first step to beating burnout is being able to identify its symptoms and recognize the contributing factors that may have caused it. The most common symptoms of work burnout are chronic stress, irritability, fituge, frequent illness, and the development or worsening of anxiety and depression. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms you may be suffering from work burnout.
So, how can work burnout be alleviated?
The most important part of treating burnout is identifying what is causing it so that actions can be taken to reduce its effects. The symptoms that come along with burnout can be caused by many different factors. The most common factors that cause work burnout are a heavy workload, creating unattainable goals, poor time management, and neglecting personal needs. If you are experiencing work burnout due to the causes listed above there are several things you can do to alleviate burnout and reduce stress. These healing practices will be listed and explained in the remaining four steps.
2. Set boundaries separating work from home:
Many people continue working even after they clock out from their job at the end of the day. Bringing work home with you causes additional stress and takes away from crucial downtime which can result in you feeling overwhelmed and overworked.
It may feel like you have to bring work home to get it all done, and you may think that doing this will reduce your stress and workload for the next day. However, bringing work home with you results in increased stress because you are taking away from the valuable family and relaxation time you need.
It may be even more difficult for individuals who work from home. When you work remotely, the boundaries between work and home can easily become muddied. For those who work remotely, it is important to set rigid times for when the workday begins and ends. Set an alarm on your phone to signal the end of the workday to ensure you are not overworking yourself.
For people who work from home, it may also be helpful to create a separate workspace like an office or desk that is a designated work area. It may be tempting to work from your couch or get cozy in bed while working on the computer, but these are places for relaxation. Using these spaces for work can send mixed signals to your brain and cause you to have difficulty winding down when the work day is done.
3. Don't be afraid to take time off:
Working day in and day out can result in strain and stress, which could negatively affect your mental health and well-being. Many people feel guilty about taking more than a day or two off but, to avoid and alleviate work burnout it is important to schedule time off. Taking off a week or longer periodically allows you to rest and recharge, improving your mental health and work performance.
Extended time off can be used to spend time with family, go on a vacation, or just as a time to relax. Whatever activities you choose to do make sure they are enjoyable and not work-related. Scheduling time to take a break from work can positively impact your physical and mental health, reducing the risks of stress-related illness and an increase in happiness. Along with this, it can result in other benefits like improved relationships with family and increased motivation.
4. Set aside time for yourself and make self-care a priority
While taking time off of work is important and beneficial it is also important to take time for yourself at the end of the workday or on the weekends. Taking time to relax and practice self-care has been found to reduce stress and improve overall health. It has also been found to improve work performance, increasing motivation and productivity.
There are many different ways that you can take time for yourself and recharge. One thing that can be done to reduce stress is having a self-care day. This time can be used to rest, have an at-home spa day, or binge Netflix with some tasty snacks.
Another activity that may help alleviate burnout is exercising. Participating in moderate exercise has been found to benefit both physical and mental health, reducing blood pressure and lowering stress levels. Practicing restful and mindful activities like meditation has been found to reduce anxiety and have helped to relieve work burnout.
One resource that can be used for rest and meditation is Headspace. Headspace is an app that provides guided mindfulness and meditation . It also provides information and additional tools to help reduce anxiety and improve sleep. Failing to get the proper amount of sleep or not getting restful sleep may be a contributing factor to work burnout. When you are feeling tired your body is under additional stress and activities that may normally seem simple become anxiety-inducing. Headspace has free and paid resources that will help you unwind and fall asleep if that is something you struggle with.
5. Consider finding a new job if your stress and exhaustion doesn’t improve:
While there are effective methods that alleviate and prevent burnout, if all efforts to reduce symptoms seem to fail, finding a new job may be the best course of action. Your current job may be too demanding and stressful, you may not find it enjoyable, or it may not fit with your current lifestyle even though it may have at one time.
while searching for a new job may not be the desirable option, it may be the most beneficial option for your physical and mental health.
Work burnout causes extreme physical and mental exhaustion and result in other serious issues like high blood pressure and heart palpitations. It is important to recognize and treat work burnout for the benefit of your physical and mental health. The five methods of avoiding and preventing work burnout reviewed in this article may help reduce the stress that comes along with burnout. If these methods do not alleviate your work burnout it is important to seek additional help and support.
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