There’s certainly nothing wrong with a healthy dose of pressure in some aspects of our lives…if we didn’t have the pressure or incentives of deadlines, appointments or goals we’d all be stuck to our beds/sofas or the sun lounger It’s when ‘healthy’ pressure turns into stress and exhaustion that we have a serious problem and it’s a problem that needs attention. Even hearing the word stress can make us suddenly feel tense.
Though we are mostly educated and informed about the dangers of stress through public health, media and the educational sector, we still don’t seem to know when enough is enough. we push harder because we feel there we have no choice and that there is not enough time in the day. A lot of women seem to have forgotten how to use their ‘off’ switch. We really do try and have it all in life, the career the family the wardrobe, the social life ALL of it. All this comes at a price, a massive price to your health and price a on hindsight you wouldn’t be prepared to pay.
There’s a difference between feeling tired and feeling extremely exhausted and when you’ve been feeling that level of exhaustion for so long you’re in danger of suffering with burnout! Whatever it’s officially called, knowing the signs and symptoms and also how to recover from exhaustion will make a great difference to the way you feel, look and progress in life. Just because you’re very busy it doesn’t mean you’re going to be successful or produce the best quality of work if you feeling sapped of energy, when you get to this stage…something has GOT to give.
You may know someone who’s behaviour has become increasingly erratic and aggressive which is normally out of character for that person. Maybe someone has had the guts to comment on how abrasive or intense you are to be around recently. Some find that after working to a high standard and competently in their role they will gradually find that their job becomes a struggle, you may struggle to do tasks you’ve always done easily such as making decisions and a lack of motivation towards the job itself. You’re doing the job because you have to, because it pays the bills and you moan incessantly about your job to anyone who will listen.
Both occupational and organisational psychologists have extensively researched how you can know you are suffering from burnout, what causes it and how you can and will recover and avoid falling into the exhaustive trap all over again.
WHAT CAUSES BURNOUT?
According to the Mayo clinic you may be more likely to experience burnout if…
– You do not find time for a balance between your work life and your personal/social life: A time when you are laughing, smiling feeling relaxed and happy around the people you love. If you are constantly working and under stress where are the times and moments in your life when you get to experience these emotions that keep us sane and calm?
– Though it may sound like a luxury or trivial, we as humans always gravitate to rest and play for good reason. Forcing extra work and chores on yourself is a direct path to burn out. When we play and rest we are restoring our energy levels, which you can’t do if you’re constantly working and under pressure.
– You try to be everything to everyone all the time and not making time for yourself: This tends to be because to want to feel important and feel needed but you will not be much use to anyone if you continue as burn out leaves you exhausted and incapable of sticking to commitments and you may find you are cancelling social events and time with friends and family more often.
You work in a helping profession, such as health care, counselling or teaching: profession which can be emotionally draining and demanding on our energy levels.
You feel you have little or no control over your work
Your job is monotonous, unchallening and lacks stimulation to keep you excited and motivated.
HOW TO RECOVER FROM BURNOUT?
If you believe from what has been said in this article so far you are suffering from burn out then there is a way forward out of the feelings of exhaustion, apathy and unhappiness. First and foremost, speak to your gp and discuss your symptoms. If caught early it may be a case of talking it through and getting time off to recuperate. Though the very worse thing we could do is to ignore it and carry on pushing yourself too hard. If burnout is ignored it could lead to the following issues:
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