28 Aug Career Burnout? Learn to Re-Ignite.
Career burnout sucks the life out of life. In fact, it was recently accepted as a formal diagnosis by the World Health Organization. You may feel intense physical and mental exhaustion that does not go away with a vacation or one good night’s sleep. Simply put, it is drudgery to drag yourself to work and impossible to quit thinking about it when you’re home.
Career Burnout Symptoms:
- Lethargy/Chronic Fatigue
- Lack of Focus/Concentration
- Reduced Performance
- Sense of Alienation at Work
- Intense Cynicism about Job & Life
- Hopelessness/Suicidal Thoughts
Anyone can experience it. High achievers, perfectionists, and people who highly identify self with their career are more susceptible due to a propensity to overwork. Additionally, those in the helping professions, a monotonous job, or a job with little control are also at risk.
Lady Gaga and Mariah Carey, among others, have dealt with burnout publicly. Mariah went to rehab. Escape and be pampered for a month while you figure shit out? You’re daydreaming about that, right? Snap out of it. Who has the time or money for that?!
In this case, you could take a page from Lady Gaga. Believe it or not, it’s free and doesn’t involve wearing a meat dress. Gaga reported that she stopped people pleasing, slowed down and explored new passions. Below are some more strategies.
Re-Ignite Career Burnout:
- Evaluate Burnout. Is the burnout about the job itself or your behaviors related to work? If it’s the job, explore a job search or a career change. However, if it’s your behavior, bring back balance. Discuss concerns with your supervisor who may be able to offer help with project management or explore development options to renew motivation.
- Attitude Adjustment. For example, try looking at your job through the lens of appreciation instead of the lens of cynicism. Maybe you really like your co-workers, benefits, or a certain aspect of the work. Try shifting your focus from the things you hate to the things you like about the job.
- Rediscover Passion. Were you passionate about your work at one point? Why? Make a list to remind yourself. Maybe you never were. Perhaps it was a job of convenience? Is it time to change careers or is it time to build activities you are passionate about into your routine? Make a list of activities or causes that you are passionate about and start to plan how to add these into your life.
- Movement and Sleep. Exercise 3x’s a week and make time to sleep 7 to 8 hours a night. If these two areas of your life are being ignored, bringing back movement and sleep will make a world of difference. Generally, your mind will clear and you can devise a new plan.
Don’t Go It Alone
Seek support from co-workers, friends or loved ones. Namely, they can offer you the care and compassion that you are unable to offer yourself.
If you question if you have workaholic tendencies which led to burnout, try taking author and psychotherapist Bryan Robinson’s quiz.
Therapy helps too! Learn how to be compassionate to yourself and explore change. I specialize in this area and can help you get back on track with living a connected and meaningful life. Call or email me today.
Kate Murphy, LCSW
Kate Murphy, a therapist in Chamblee, GA, specializes in helping you decrease stress and anxiety. You can live a more balanced, connected, and meaningful life. Kate works with individuals and couples over the age of 18 to support healing, communicating, and experiencing joy more often.