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5 Signs You’re Heading for a Work Burnout

January 16, 2020
Work burnouts can leave you feeling stressed, anxious and lacking in motivation - these are the main signs you might be heading for one.

A work burnout can leave you feeling stressed, emotionally exhausted and completely lacking in motivation - both in your work and personal life. However, there are a number of steps you can take to avoid burnout and get you back on track to enjoying your job again. From meditation to evaluating your work-life balance, avoiding burnout isn’t as difficult as you might think. So if you think you might be heading for a work burnout, the following signs below will help you to establish whether or not one might be heading your way and how to avoid it.

The Major Signs You’re Heading for a Work Burnout

You Struggle Getting Up in The Mornings on Workdays

Getting up for work can be difficult on the best of days - especially after a heavy weekend or late night. 

However, if you find yourself not being able to get yourself out of bed every morning before work, but have no problems at the weekend, then you might be heading for a work burnout. 

Whether you’re just completely unmotivated to be on time for work, you’re feeling unusually exhausted, or it’s a combination of the two - it’s one of the first, most subtle signs that you’re heading for burnout.

You’ve Become Unproductive 

Another clear sign that you’re heading for a work burnout is that you’ve become unproductive at work.

Whether you’re aimlessly trawling the internet to avoid that important report that’s due, or you just find yourself staring at a blank page, unable to get started on your work - it’s a sign that a burnout is on the horizon. 

You’ve Lost Interest in Your Job 

One of the more advanced signs that you’re heading for a work burnout is that you’ve lost interest in your job - and not just with the boring bits! 

Whether you find yourself thinking about a career change, looking for other jobs, or simply just feel like you hate everything that you once loved - it’s a sign that you need to take action and get yourself back on track to loving your job again. 

You’ve Become Irritable With Colleagues 

Whether they’re some of your best friends, or you just tolerate them during work hours - you spend a lot of time with your colleagues, so it’s important to maintain a good relationship with them.

However, if you find yourself rolling your eyes at them a little more often, avoiding certain people and generally just feeling annoyed with everyone you work with, then you might be heading for burnout. 

When you’re feeling emotionally exhausted and stressed, it’s common to be less tolerant of people - especially those you’re closest to. However, being irritable with your colleagues can be a dangerous game, so it’s important to address the issue before you run into trouble at work.

You’re More Emotional Than Usual 

Finally, if you find yourself feeling a little more sensitive to criticism, or tearing up at your desk, then you might be on the verge of a work burnout. 

Feeling emotional is a common sign that you’re emotionally and physically exhausted, so it’s important to take action as quickly as possible to ensure the problem doesn’t get worse. 

How to Avoid a Work Burnout 

If you identify with any of the signs of a work burnout above, then it’s important to take action to get you back on track and make you love your work again. The following tips will help you to avoid a work burnout, lower your stress levels and make sure you’re feeling happier and healthier in your role. 

Try Meditation 

Whether you’ve found yourself snapping at colleagues more often, or just feel like you need to de-stress - meditation is the perfect solution. 

Helping you to focus on your breathing and thoughts, meditation will help you to clear your mind, lower your blood pressure and leave you feeling more relaxed and happy. 

So whether you go to a meeting room for 10 minutes to meditate during the day, or do it first thing in the morning - it can have a huge impact on your overall mood and outlook and help you to avoid that burnout you were heading for. 

Evaluate Your Work-Life Balance 

One of the most common causes of a work burnout is working too much and not leaving enough time for leisure activities. This is especially common among freelancers, who often work irregular hours and can spend their evenings and weekends doing work for clients, leading to a burnout. 

If you think you might be heading for burnout, you should certainly evaluate whether or not you’ve been spending enough time doing the things you love. 

If the answer is no, then you should set some rules for yourself to make sure you clock off from work and leave enough time during the evenings and weekends to have fun and spend time with your family and friends - without feeling guilty.

Additionally, it’s also important to make sure you’re taking enough holiday days to get some rest and leave you feeling refreshed and revived. This is especially important for those who are self-employed and don’t get annual leave, as they are often reluctant to take a day off work and lose money! However, it’s important to remember that a burnout will force you to take time off - possibly more than you would for a holiday, so they should be factored into your annual accounts.

Get Enough Sleep 

Aside from evaluating your work life balance, you should make sure you’re getting enough sleep to help you avoid burning out. 

Whether you stop getting up early to go to the gym a few mornings per week, or you stop working on your laptop until the early hours of the morning - getting enough sleep can help to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety, lessening your chances of burnout. 

Talk to Your Manager 

Whether your workload has just got a little bit too much, or you’re not happy with something at work - talking to your manager can help to lift that weight from your shoulders and hopefully put an action plan in place to reduce your stress levels and avoid burnout. 

Whether they put a plan in place to help you to manage your workload, lessen your responsibilities for a month or two, or hire more people for your team - your manager will only be able to help you avoid burnout if you discuss it with them.

Change Your Environment

Finally, if you’ve already tried all of the steps above to help you reduce a work burnout, but you’re still feeling stressed and exhausted, then it might be time to change your environment. 

Whether you look for a new job, or simply decide to go and hot desk at a coworking space instead of working from home, a change in environment can go a huge way to helping you avoid burnout. 

So whether you’ve been feeling more stressed and irritable than usual, or you’ve totally lost interest in your job - it might be a sign that a work burnout is on the horizon. However, following the steps above will help you to avoid a total burnout and get you back on track at work. 

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