Pause, reflect and take action - you are experiencing early warning signs of burnout
Encroaching work-life imbalance and growing risk of burnout
Be careful - you are starting to display some of the classic signs of professional burnout. You might still find a level of enjoyment and fulfilment in your job, but there are instances where the volume or intensity of the work creates a sense of being swamped and the feeling of struggle in managing it all. It's a pattern that's concerning, considering that it is no longer restricted to the regular office hours.
You have been extending your work into your personal time too, often taking it back home, turning your living space into an extension of your office. Your weekdays don't seem to end, and weekends too are infiltrated by work tasks, leaving very little time for you to truly disconnect and rejuvenate.
Added to this, there seems to be an increase in your difficulty to unwind and attain a relaxed state of mind. You may not have realised it, but these moments of tension have been pushing you towards the possibility of using unhealthy coping mechanisms. For example, you may have started to consume alcohol more than your usual intake, perhaps as an attempt to numb the stress or escape from it momentarily.
The cumulative effect of all these factors could be taking a toll on your wellbeing, both physically and emotionally. It's a crucial juncture that needs you to stop, assess, and introspect. Reflect upon your current circumstances at work, your lifestyle choices and your overall well-being. It's important for you to strategise and implement changes to restore balance. You need to revisit your work-life boundaries, consider stress management techniques, and possibly seek help if needed. Now is the time to prioritise your health and well-being, as ignoring these signs could lead to more severe consequences in the future.
Here are five tips to combat burnout and regain a sense of balance and well-being in your life:
Connect with Your Higher-Up: Openness about feeling burnout can be a vital part in addressing the issue. If your workload is becoming unbearable, plan a discussion to talk about the tasks that are contributing to your stress. Communicating these challenges allows both of you to strategise or reprioritise to better manage your tasks. They may not be fully aware of your situation, and initiating this dialogue can pave the way for receiving help and making necessary modifications.
Job Description Review: It can be beneficial to request a review of your job description with your manager. Over time, roles evolve, and extra responsibilities may be added, which may not align with your original job scope. In such cases, it's important to determine if your workload aligns with your actual job description. If it doesn't, then renegotiating the terms of your role, or redistributing excess responsibilities, could alleviate the burden.
Implement Boundaries: Cultivate the practice of setting distinct boundaries between your work and personal life. Make sure to utilise your off hours for personal time and relaxation without any work intrusion. This can reduce feelings of constant engagement with work and lower your stress levels.
Stress Management Techniques: Introduce routines such as regular exercise, balanced nutrition, and mindfulness practices like meditation or yoga. These can boost your physical and mental resilience, helping you manage stress more effectively.
Seek Professional Assistance: If feelings of burnout persist, consider seeking help from a professional, such as a therapist or counsellor, who can provide you with strategies to manage stress and can help you better understand its root causes. While a therapist can provide coping mechanisms to manage stress responses, they will not be able to alter the environment causing the stress.
Consider the benefits of coaching, as it can be a powerful method for recovering from burnout while refining your work-life balance.
As your coach, I can help you identify the specific triggers and patterns that led to your burnout, guiding you to understand the causes of your stress and anxiety. Together, we will develop tailored strategies to address these challenges.
This shift can lessen the feeling of being constantly 'on' that accompanies burnout. I will help you in drawing clear lines between your professional obligations and personal life, nurturing habits that lead to a comprehensive well-being.
Let coaching be your stepping stone towards a balanced life, with purpose and fulfilment.