You’re working hard. You’re pushing yourself and your team to new heights. You’re killing it in your career. But are you on the brink of work burnout?
It can be tough to know for sure, but there are a few key signs that it might be time to take a step back and reevaluate your work-life balance. If you’re feeling exhausted, stressed, or overwhelmed, it might be time to make a change.
Following are tips for avoiding work burnout, find balance, and keep it in 2023 and beyond.
What Is Work Burnout?
You might be experiencing work burnout if you feel constantly overwhelmed and drained, like you can’t keep up with the demands of your job. You may find yourself working longer hours, but feeling like you’re not getting anything done. Or you may feel irritable and short-tempered with your colleagues or clients.
If you’re feeling any of these symptoms, it’s important to take steps to address them before they get worse. Ignoring work burnout can lead to stress-related health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. And work burnout can quickly overflow to your life, which you don’t want to happen!
Identifying the Signs and Symptoms of Work Burnout
Do you feel like you’re drowning? Like you’re constantly running with no end in sight? That you’re sacrificing your life for your job? These are signs that you might be experiencing work burnout.
Burnout is a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion that can be caused by excessive stress in your life. And it’s not just limited to people in high-stress jobs. Anyone can experience burnout, whether you’re a freelancer, business owner, or corporate CEO.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed and constantly stressed, it might be time to take a step back and evaluate your job and your work-life balance. Here are a few other signs and symptoms of burnout to look out for:
- You’re having trouble sleeping or aren’t sleeping well.
- You’re feeling irritable or angry all the time.
- You’ve lost interest in things you used to enjoy.
- You feel like you can’t do anything right.
- You’re constantly anxious or worried.
Strategies for Avoiding and Managing Work Burnout
It’s no secret that burnout is a real problem in the United States. Before it takes over your life, take a breath and follow some known strategies to avoid and manage work burnout.
First, it’s important to know your limits and acknowledge when you’re starting to feel overwhelmed. If you’re feeling burned out, take some time for yourself to recharge – even if it’s just a few minutes each day.
You can also try to change your work habits to find a better balance. For example, block out specific times each day for email and phone calls and turn your notifications and ringer off outside of those times. This is crucial, so you’re not always “on” and constantly distracted.
And finally, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Talk to your boss or colleagues about your workload, and see if there is any way they can lighten your load or change workflows to make processes more streamlined, which will boost productivity for everyone.
Setting Boundaries for Yourself
One of the best things you can do to avoid work burnout is to set boundaries for yourself. This means learning to say no to things that you don’t have time for, and delegating tasks that you don’t need to do yourself.
It can be tough to set boundaries at first – especially if you’re used to being a people pleaser – but it’s worth it. Setting boundaries will help you protect your time and energy, so you can focus on the things that are truly important to you.
Here are a few tips for setting boundaries:
- When someone asks you to do something, take a few moments to consider whether or not you have the time and energy for it. If not, politely decline or speak to your boss to find another solution.
- If you’re working on a project, make sure you set a deadline for yourself and stick to it. This will help you avoid procrastinating and wasting time.
- Learn to delegate tasks to other people. This can be tough if you’re used to doing everything yourself, but it’s important to remember that other people are perfectly capable of helping you.
Finding Balance with a Flexible Schedule
One way to avoid work burnout is to have a flexible schedule. This might not be possible for everyone, but if you can do it, it’s definitely worth it.
A flexible schedule means you have some control over when and how you work. Maybe you don’t have to be in the office from 9-5 every day. Maybe you can take a longer lunch break so you can go for a walk or do something that relaxes you.
Whatever it is, having a flexible schedule can help you avoid burnout because it gives you some control over your day. And when you feel like you have control over your day, it’s a lot easier to avoid feeling overwhelmed.
Making Time for Rest and Relaxation
You’re close to burnout if you’re finding that you can’t relax or have any down time without feeling guilty. It’s important to schedule in time for yourself, whether that means taking a break to read your favorite book, going for a walk outside, or taking a yoga class.
You might also want to consider investing in a massage, which can be incredibly helpful in reducing stress and tension. And while massage therapy might not be possible on a regular basis, even just one session can make a big difference.
Finally, make sure you’re getting enough sleep! This is often the first thing to go when we’re feeling stressed and busy. But it’s so important for our physical and mental health. If you’re not getting enough rest, you’re more likely to get sick, and you’ll have a harder time dealing with stress.
Key Takeaways about How to Avoid Work Burnout
If you’re showing any of the signs of burnout, then it’s time to prioritize yourself and make some changes. There is no reason why anyone should have to feel burned out from their jobs to point that they dread going to work or to the point that the impatience, irritability, and unhappiness they feel at work shifts to their personal lives.
Make 2023 the year you put yourself first and take steps to change your work or career, so burnout becomes a thing of the past!