Workplace burnout, once defined by World Health Organization (WHO) as “a state of vital exhaustion”, is now defined as “A syndrome conceptualized as resulting from chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed.”

We all know that a healthy level of stress is necessary to achieve optimal productivity at work. However, anything more than the healthy range is one step closer to burnout. With technological advances and workplace mobility, it seems tougher than ever to separate work from life. Being connected everywhere we go, it’s always so tempting to reply that email or pick up that call even after work hours. As motivated and passionate one can be, there’s always this fine line that one may cross beyond and become burnout.

Signs of Burnout

Extreme fatigue

It may be due to insomnia whereby an individual is under excessive stress that falling asleep is difficult and this lasts for a while. On the other hand, one might still be sleeping regularly but yet not feeling energized. Many of times, this results in employees falling sick more often and potential increase in absenteeism.

Lack of interest

This is when you don’t feel as enthusiastic and excited about your work as before. You feel empty going to work and nothing seems to give you that sense of fulfillment you once had. Slowly, you become indifferent towards your work environment and worse still, everything else.

Poorer performance

This may or may not be definite signs of burnout, but poorer performance definitely give stress. Be it having a burnout and therefore poorer performance or vice versa, it isn’t a good outcome.

Causes of Burnout

1. High workload, frequent overtime work required
2. Too engross in work, therefore neglecting personal life
3. Lack of control over your work
4. Job is too challenging or too monotonous
5. Poor relationship with colleagues
It is important to identify what causes you to experience burnout and signs that you are burning out. Understanding your tell-tale signs will be essential to intervene before things get worse.

What should you do if you are burning out?

For Employees

Take care of your personal well-being

Divert your energy and attention to yourself. Do relaxation activities like yoga, meditation or breathing exercise to relax your mind before you sleep. In addition to that, avoid using any electronic devices that will kick start the engine in your mind once again causing insomnia. Having a healthy diet and exercising regularly will help to reduce stress levels, allowing you to manage your burnout situation better.

Speak out, Get help

Don’t keep it to yourself and sink deeper. Talk to your friends, your colleagues or even your supervisor to see how things can be made better for you.

For Employers

Increase awareness of workplace burnout

Organize workshops for your employees to understand more about workplace burnout. The content may include how to identify burnout for yourself and for your colleagues and the avenues that one can take when struggling with burnout.

Provide avenues for employees to seek help

In-depth training for managers so that they know what they can do to support their subordinates’ mental health well-being. Not only that, organizations can have a specialised employee or an expert in house to provide help and guidance to affect employees.

Encouraging work-life balance

Nothing beats having an organizational culture that supports work-life balance. This is part of your employer branding strategy. Some initiatives certain organization take is for example flexible work options and hours. By providing employees with more control over their time, it can help to reduce stress and prevent burnout. This is just one suggestion and there are definitely more components employers can do to cultivate this culture.

Explore the other possibilities in life. If the environment isn’t healthy for your mental wellbeing, it is time for you to make things better for yourself.

Kingfisher Recruitment Group is a global provider of total recruitment solutions. We help clients design people strategies, attract and develop talents worldwide across Healthcare & Life Sciences, Professional Services, Technology, Retail & Consumer, Manufacturing, Automotive, Property & Construction and Engineering industries. Let us know if you are seeking for opportunities or looking for talents within these industries. We have a dedicated team of specialist consultants who are always ready to extend their services to you.