This is part one of a three-part series on dealing with job burnout. In this first post, we provide resources for you to determine if you are experiencing job burnout. Part two will cover the causes of burnout, and part three offers some solutions for job burnout.
Stress on the job is nothing new. But lately, you’ve noticed a different type of stress. You are having trouble sleeping and just can’t work up enthusiasm for your job anymore. You may even be getting sick more often.
It’s not just being bored now and then, or not being excited about a project you’re working on. You’re noticing that your attitude about your job has become more negative and you can’t work up the excitement level you used to experience. Even areas of your job that you used to enjoy are not longer pleasurable.
You could be suffering from job burnout. If you suspect that’s the case, it’s best to determine that sooner or later so you can take steps to overcome it.
While it’s not a specific medical condition, it is a specific type of stress and can lead to exhaustion, illness and inability to function properly if not treated.
Job burnout isn’t necessarily related to the number of hours you work, either. You could work 80 hours and week and be fueled by passion for your work. Or you could be barely squeezing in 30 and dreading every one of them.
If you think you may have an issue with job burnout, here are some questions provided by staff of the Mayo Clinic that you can answer to determine if that may be the case.
- Have you become cynical or critical at work?
- Do you drag yourself to work and have trouble getting started once you arrive?
- Have you become irritable or impatient with co-workers, customers or clients?
- Do you lack the energy to be consistently productive?
- Do you lack satisfaction from your achievements?
- Do you feel disillusioned about your job?
- Are you using food, drugs or alcohol to feel better or to simply not feel?
- Have your sleep habits or appetite changed?
- Are you troubled by unexplained headaches, backaches or other physical complaints?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may be experiencing job burnout.
Symptoms include irritability, chronic fatigue, loss of appetite, insomnia, increased illnesses and feelings of anxiety. You may feel apathetic and hopeless and begin to feel isolated from your co-workers.
Take a case of job burnout seriously. It won’t just go away like a cold and you need to do more than treat the symptoms. If not treated, you may experience more illnesses and may even start to perform poorly on your job.
Come back for part two, which will discuss causes of job burnout.