Burnout. How to Tell If You're Headed for One and What to Do About It?
Have you noticed a change in your mood, energy level or motivation that's affecting your performance at work? If so, here are the 5 steps showing what to do when burnout is creeping into your life.
by Roksana Fraczek | Dream-Career
Photo: Pixelshot via Canva
We all want to be successful in life, yet we frequently pursue someone else's expectations and their version of success without exploring what matters to us. We disconnect from who we are, we betray what we value, and abandon what is important to us. We sacrifice parts of ourselves to fit in places that drain us. This may lead to feelings of helplessness and exhaustion. Or, in short, to burnout.
Burnout is a complex systemic problem prevailing in organizations with a toxic culture. A culture that values profit over people and rewards self-denial. Yes, we do need to hold the organizations accountable, but we also need to take responsibility for our own well-being.
How to tell if you're burning out?
If you're not sure whether you're burnt out or not, here are some signs to look for:
You're always tired and have no energy.
You can't concentrate or focus on anything.
You're easily irritable and quick to anger.
You have trouble sleeping.
You've lost your appetite or you're overeating.
You're drinking more alcohol than usual.
You're withdrawing from friends and family.
You're feeling hopeless, helpless, and worthless.
If you answered 'yes' to any of these questions, you may be headed for burnout. Ignoring the problem will only make it worse.
How to deal with burnout?
Step #1 - Acknowledge you’re experiencing burnout.
Most people do not realize they are burning out until it is too late. Usually, by the time you’re feeling burnt out, you’ve already lost touch with what matters to you, disconnected from what previously excited you, and feel like everything is a chore. If this is you, the first step is to simply acknowledge that you are burning out.
Step #2 - Understand burnout is not for the weak.
There's this myth that it's the weak people who burn out. But the truth is, it's those who have gone above and beyond, pushing their limits way too hard for way too long who fall into burnout. It's the high-achievers, the go-getters, and the ones who are always hustling. If you're someone who is constantly pushing yourself to be better, do more, and accomplish more, then you're at a higher risk for burnout.
"It's those who are going above and beyond, pushing their limits way too hard for way too long who get burnt out."
Step #3 - Recognize you need to make a change.
This can be a difficult realization to come to but it’s an important one. You need to accept that the way you’ve been doing things up until this point isn’t working and that something needs to change.
Step #4 - Find out what matters to you.
When we lose touch with what matters to us, we become lost. We no longer know what we're fighting for or why we're doing what we're doing. You need to take the time to figure out what matters to you. What are your values? What do you stand for? What makes you happy? Once you know what matters to you, it will be easier for you to let go of what drains you and transition into a career that makes you come alive.
Step #5 - Ask for help.
This is where things can get tricky because it’s not always easy to figure out what we want and what needs to be done differently all on our own. The journey to recovery is one of self-growth, but you were never meant to do it alone. Talking to someone who understands what you’re going through can be incredibly helpful. Connect with others who have gone through similar experiences or seek professional help who can assist you in exploring the root causes of your burnout and help you develop a plan to address it.
There is a way out.
Burnout is a complex problem but by taking these five simple steps, you can start to address how you feel and make changes that will improve your well-being.
If you're feeling burnt out, don't hesitate to reach out for help. Talk to someone who understands what you're going through and can offer guidance and support. Remember, there is a way out and you are not alone.
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