Working together to combat burnout
Written on the 6 November 2019 by Janet Culpitt
If both your first and last task of the day is to check your emails, you're not alone. Contemporary work culture, spurred on by advances in technology, has meant that we are expected to always be "on". Gone are the days of the 9-5. Many of us work at all hours, possibly even holding down side gigs, and that's before we take into account the labour we perform in other areas of our lives.
You may then have felt some sense of vindication, when earlier this year, the World Health Organisation listed burnout as an "occupational syndrome" on its revised International Classification of Diseases.i Burnout is not a new phenomenon, but it has become increasingly pervasive in the last 20 years. A hallmark, or a symptom of modern life.
The WHO classifies burnout as "chronic workplace stress" that "should not be applied to describe experiences in other areas of life".i This is a useful description, for burnout forms and ferments in contemporary workplaces. But as anyone who's suffered from it can tell you, its impact can be felt in all areas of your life.
A millennial issue?
A battle of the generations helps no one however. Burnout can just as easily be felt by a student working two bar jobs, a single mother nursing ad-hoc agency shifts, and an older business owner, trying to sure up their nest egg. Workplace stress can affect people at any age and in any profession.
Recognising the signs
Lighting the fire
You might also need a little 'me time' to break up the daily grind. Give yourself permission to do the small things that help you to unwind. This might mean a walk out in nature, a catch up with friends or even a quiet day at home with the family.
In these situations, it pays to be honest. The most radical act of self-care is admitting to a colleague or supervisor that you're struggling. Only then can you work together to find a solution.
Compassion and community
We don't need to wear exhaustion as a badge of honour. If you're feeling like you're running on empty, be kind to yourself. And if you can, open up about how you're feeling. By working together we can all help minimise the impact of burnout.
Author: Janet Culpitt
About: Janet Culpitt is a mentor for passionate SME business owners, looking to expand their business and create a successful plan for growth and sustainability. Her life long experience in the business industry and entrepreneurship, allows her to educate and lead her clients to developing impeccable skills in networking, forming long lasting connections.Connect via: Twitter LinkedIn