United We Care | A Super App for Mental Wellness

Burnout: 8 Important Tips To Overcome Burnout

June 2, 2023

10 min read

Avatar photo
Author : United We Care
Burnout: 8 Important Tips To Overcome Burnout

 

Introduction

Do you feel more exhausted these days than usual? Have you been this way for a few days or weeks? Then, my friend, you might be on the road to burnout. At the end of a difficult work day, we can end up feeling tired, stressed, and exhausted. But if it’s been lasting for days without you feeling like there is any glimmer of hope and peace, then you’re at the right place. Since I have driven myself to the point of burnout many times in my life, I can help you understand how burnout can impact you and how you can overcome it so that you don’t make the mistakes I did. In this article, I will be sharing my experiences with you.

“Burnout is not just about being too busy or feeling overwhelmed… It’s feeling like your work has no purpose, and you don’t have support.” -Richie Norton [1]

What is Burnout?

Before knowing the definition of burnout, we must begin by understanding the meaning of stress.

STRESS is a mental or emotional state that may be defined by tension due to extreme situations and conditions. BURNOUT is a condition that occurs when you have been dealing with stress for too long. It can make you feel super low mentally or emotionally. Stress happens when you have too much work, too many responsibilities, and long hours. For you to feel burned out, you need to have a lack of motivation, energy, and care [2].

Burnout is also sometimes industry-specific. If you come from a work environment that involves deep personal and emotional interactions, such as human services, education, or healthcare, then you are more likely to get burned out. In these industries, you might have to think more about the people you have to deal with than yourself, and even have long working hours. In fact, as much as 46% of people in these industries can feel burned out [3].

What are The Signs of Burnout?

If you are already feeling that you are experiencing burnout, then you can probably look at the following signs to confirm [4]:

Signs of Burnout

  1. Emotional Exhaustion: You might feel absolutely emotionally and mentally exhausted, as if you are drained and don’t have any energy left in you to complete any professional or personal tasks.
  2. Depersonalization: There might come a point where you start feeling negatively about everything. You might feel that you are completely detached from your work, colleagues, clients, etc. This detachment is called depersonalization, where you become emotionally distant from work as well as the people around you.
  3. Reduced Personal Accomplishments: You might start seeing that your productivity and quality of work have started decreasing. Sometimes, when the work is too much, and we start feeling detached, we are just not able to focus on the work at hand. This might also decrease your capabilities, effectiveness, and personal achievements.
  4. Physical Symptoms: When you are burned out, your body might also start telling you about it. You might not be able to sleep or eat properly. So, if you are feeling extremely tired, have headaches, or eating too little or too much, then you are experiencing burnout.
  5. Cognitive Difficulties: So far, I’m sure you must have understood that when you are feeling burned out, you might feel drained. So, when you are already feeling that way, you will not even be able to focus on your work or make decisions that will turn out beneficial. In fact, you might even face issues with your memory.
  6. Increased Irritability and Negativity: You might start feeling irritated and impatient about the smallest of issues. In fact, you might even stop liking your work and justifying it in general.
  7. Withdrawal and Isolation: When you are burned out, even seeing people’s faces might seem more exhausting. So, you might start cutting off from social interactions at work as well as personal relationships.

How Can You Avoid Burnout?

Before you start experiencing burnout, you just need some effective strategies that can help you avoid it altogether [6]:

Can You Avoid Burnout

  1. Self-Care and Work-Life Balance: Burnout happens because you start taking care of everything except yourself. So, start prioritizing self-care. You can indulge in exercising, sleeping on time, eating healthy, taking out time for hobbies, etc. That way, you can even achieve a work-life balance.
  2. Establish Boundaries: Usually, burnout happens because we start getting work at home and blur the lines between work life and personal life. So keep your boundaries clear- work is work, home is home. You don’t have to be available for work at all times.
  3. Social Support: At the end of the day, when you can share your thoughts and experiences with someone, you might be able to let go easily. In that case, you focus on more important things in a better manner rather than focusing on things that are getting out of control. So, talk to family, friends, colleagues, etc., and get all the support you need.
  4. Time Management: You should learn to manage your time well. I started using a to-do list so that I could arrange my work and prioritize easily. That way, I only focused on things that were important first, and I only took on tasks that I could manage in one day and put everything else on another day.
  5. Stress Management Techniques: One of the best ways to avoid burnout is by practicing stress-management techniques. You can bring meditation, breath control, yoga, etc., into your justifyand daily life to not get over-stressed.
  6. Regular Breaks: My school teachers used to tell us not to sit and study the whole day without breaks. So, even as a professional, take frequent breaks throughout the day. You can take a 15-minute break every 50 to 90 minutes. That way, you can get charged up physically, mentally, and emotionally and not feel tired.
  7. Seek Supervisory Support: If it’s getting too much for you to deal with, talk to your senior or your manager. You can discuss what challenges you are facing, whether it is about the task at hand or the workload. I’m not sure whether you would reach a solution or not, but it’s always good to talk.
  8. Identify Meaning and Purpose: Understand what your personal values are. If you are working on something you can connect your values with, you will be able to give it meaning and purpose. Not only will you be able to feel personally fulfilled, you might just outshine yourself.

What Can You Do If You’re Already Burned Out?

If you’re already experiencing burnout, you can take proactive steps to address and recover from the exhaustion you’re feeling [5]:

  1. You can take help from your friends, family, or colleagues by sharing your experiences and feelings.
  2. You can indulge in self-care activities, like exercising, getting enough sleep, eating healthy, etc.
  3. You need to set boundaries between work time and personal time.
  4. You can take help from a psychologist or a life coach who can teach you some techniques to cope better. United We Care is one such platform where you can get the help you need.
  5. You can speak with your manager and get your workload adjusted so that you are doing what you can actually handle.
  6. You can practice meditation, breathing exercises, relaxation, etc., to get rid of the stress you’re experiencing.
  7. Most organizations give a mandatory two weeks’ leaves. If your company does that, take it. If not, then plan one. You need to disconnect and recharge your mind and body.

How To Prevent Burnout In The Future?

If you want to avoid getting burned out in the future, just keep the following in mind [6]:

How to prevent Burnout

  1. Develop Healthy Coping Mechanisms: Start your day with some healthy activities like meditation, relaxation exercises, journaling, etc. Basically, follow everything that helps you manage your day and stress levels better. Eventually, bring these activities into your daily life.
  2. Cultivate Emotional Intelligence: To avoid any further stressors, you need to become aware of your emotions and thoughts. Once you become aware, you can easily work on managing them. In fact, when you start doing that, you will realize that you are able to understand people around you in a better manner and even communicate better.
  3. Regularly Assess Workload: You need to constantly be aware of how much work you are taking on yourself. Make sure that it always remains in a manageable range. If not, then you can pass the work to your teammates, prioritize what’s important, or speak with your managers about the workload. Just know how much you can actually handle.
  4. Foster a Supportive Work Environment: You can discuss having a healthy work environment with your management where there is time for work-life balance, and everyone can raise their concerns. In fact, you can propose to have an in-house counselor for stress management and support for mental health.
  5. Regular Exercise and Physical Activity: Did you know that exercising regularly can make you feel energetic and release happy hormones in your bloodstream? So, take 30 minutes every day for some sort of physical activity. That way, you can reduce stress, improve your mood, and become resilient to burnout.
  6. Continuous Learning and Skill Development: If you have something exciting to look forward to, you are less likely to reach burnout. So, figure out some learning opportunities where you can upgrade your skills. That way, you will feel that you are growing and there are exciting challenges at work rather than a monotony being set in.
  7. Regularly Disconnect: One very important thing you can do is to get away from your devices. So, do a technology detox, specifically on your off days. You can use this time for planning activities with your friends and family or even just relax on your own.

Conclusion

Today’s world is all about reaching the number one position. A lot of us drive ourselves to the point of burnout, where we start disliking the work we’re doing and the people around us. It can make us irritable and less productive. So, give yourself some timeout every day and indulge in having a better work-life balance. Take on only so much that you can handle and work on a schedule rather than dilly-dallying or overworking yourself. With a health home and work environment, you can conquer the world- one task at a time.

If you are facing burnout or want to learn how to prevent it, connect with our expert counselors or explore more content at United We Care! At United We Care, a team of wellness and mental health experts will guide you with the best methods for your well-being.

References

[1] “A quote by Richie Norton,” Quote by Richie Norton: “Burnout is not just about being too busy or fee…” https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/11444536-burnout-is-not-just-about-being-too-busy-or-feeling

[2] D. Drummond, “Part I: Burnout Basics – Symptoms, Effects, Prevalence and the Five Main Causes,” PubMed Central (PMC). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6139917/

[3] “Reducing workplace burnout: the relative benefits of cardiovascular and resistance exercise – PubMed,” PubMed, Apr. 09, 2015. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25870778/

[4] C. Maslach and M. P. Leiter, “Understanding the burnout experience: recent research and its implications for psychiatry,” World Psychiatry, vol. 15, no. 2, pp. 103–111, Jun. 2016, doi: 10.1002/wps.20311.

[5] W. L. Awa, M. Plaumann, and U. Walter, “Burnout prevention: A review of intervention programs,” Patient Education and Counseling, vol. 78, no. 2, pp. 184–190, Feb. 2010, doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2009.04.008.

[6] J. J. Hakanen, A. B. Bakker, and W. B. Schaufeli, “Burnout and work engagement among teachers,” Journal of School Psychology, vol. 43, no. 6, pp. 495–513, Jan. 2006, doi: 10.1016/j.jsp.2005.11.001.

Unlock Exclusive Benefits with Subscription

  • Check icon
    Premium Resources
  • Check icon
    Thriving Community
  • Check icon
    Unlimited Access
  • Check icon
    Personalised Support
Avatar photo

Author : United We Care

Founded in 2020, United We Care (UWC) is providing mental health and wellness services at a global level, UWC utilizes its team of dedicated and focused professionals with expertise in mental healthcare, to solve 2 essential missing components in the market, sustained user engagement and program efficacy/outcomes.

Scroll to Top

United We Care Business Support

Thank you for your interest in connecting with United We Care, your partner in promoting mental health and well-being in the workplace.

“Corporations has seen a 20% increase in employee well-being and productivity since partnering with United We Care”

Your privacy is our priority