Are you experiencing so much job-related stress that you’re at risk for burning out? Burning out can mean you feel a little tired, irritable and “over” your job, but it also can include more severe symptoms like an inability to focus and stay productive, a loss of satisfaction from accomplishments, sleeping too much or too little and even turning to food or other substances for stress relief. And everyone is susceptible.
Paula Davis Laack, who is a stress and resilience expert, recounts her own experience as a former lawyer who burned out. Fortunately, through her own experience, Laack has come up with ways to avoid this widespread condition:
1. Increase Your Self-Efficacy: Laack says, “Self-efficacy is having the belief in your own ability to accomplish (and exercise control over) personally meaningful goals and tasks.” This means that you can take back some of your own power. The best way to do this is by accomplishing goals. You can start small at first and build your way up.
2. Identify What You Need: And then make the (sometimes hard) decisions to get it. An article in the Harvard Business Review lists these attributes of a “dream company”:
- You can be yourself
- You’re told what’s really going on
- Your strengths are magnified
- The company stands for something meaningful
- Your daily work is rewarding
- Stupid rules don’t exist
3. Have Creative Outlets: Make sure to leave enough time outside of your work life to be creative. Especially if your current job lacks any flexibility for creativity, developing more balance in your life will help you cut down on stress and may even cause you to enjoy your job more.
4. Take Care of Yourself: It’s imperative that you be selfish every once in awhile and do some things just for you. For instance, get a massage, go for a walk – do whatever it takes for you to step away and relax. Also, instead of skipping breakfast or lunch to tackle your work load, take time to fuel yourself properly with healthy foods that will energize you.
5. Get Support: You’re never alone, but sometimes when you’re under a lot of pressure and stress it can feel that way. Avoid the urge to isolate yourself and spend a little more effort to create a group of people who will let you vent and will support you. Having others who willingly share the load will make every day a little lighter.
6. Get Real: The faster that you’re honest with yourself about what’s going on, the faster that you can start taking steps to rectify it. And the more you understand about why you’re feeling the way you do, the better you will be able to address the issue.
7. Think Positively: Studies say that a 3:1 ratio of positive to negative thoughts is all it takes to start feeling happier. So, don’t beat yourself up so much and remember to focus on the good in you and in others.
Always consult your chiropractor or primary care physician for all your health related advicel.
Image Credit: Stress 39/365 by Mike Hoff. Used under a creative commons license.
This article is made available for general, entertainment and educational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of The Joint Corp (or its franchisees and affiliates). You should always seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.