Although there’s no scientific diagnosis for burnout, everyone knows what the term means when it comes to work. It’s that feeling of exhaustion and hopelessness that grows out of stress and the daily grind. It can turn a strong performer into someone who is just going through the motions and can trigger conflicts between co-workers. Most concerning, burnout can have an affect on an employee’s physical and mental health.
Generally, stress won’t cause burnout on its own. In fact, some stressful jobs can be energizing. But when you combine high expectations for performance and productivity with a dysfunctional workplace, little control over schedules and workload, strained relationships with supervisors, and difficulty finding the right balance between work and outside life, you have a recipe for trouble.
Burnout shows itself in a variety of ways, including irritability with fellow workers and customers, difficulty with concentration, or dreading each workday. People who are suffering from burnout may become cynical or impatient, lobbing sharp criticisms at their co-workers. They may have trouble sleeping or develop headaches and stomach problems. Some may turn to food, alcohol, or drugs to make themselves feel better or mask their emotions.
Sometimes, burnout is temporary, caused by an overload of work or overwhelming situations. Often, it’s a long-term problem that can lead to fatigue and insomnia, substance abuse, and even medical conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. Burnout destroys productivity and contributes to costly turnover.
So what can you do if you’re sensing burnout on your team (or if you’re the one who’s feeling burned out)? The best thing is to get to the bottom of what’s causing those feelings and then develop skills to help you do a better job of coping. That’s where our team of professional counselors can help. We have experience working with individuals and organizations to identify the source of problems and create practical solutions. That may involve individual therapy, group workshops, or learning exercises in relaxation and mindfulness.
Care to Change can help your team overcome burnout, so your employees are less likely to leave or to suffer the effects I’ve described here. Whether you’re seeking a solution for everyone or help for a handful of key people, we can offer your company an arrangement through which we guarantee immediate availability for your employees when needed and/or allow you to offer reduced-price services as part of your employee benefits plan. If your company has an established EAP, we can explore ways to add our services to the resources you already offer. Learn more by calling us at 317-790-9396, or sending an email.
Danielle Huff is our Human Resource coordinator, and she oversees our student internship process. Danielle is responsible for developing strategies that results in a culture that cares for our team.