Updated: Jan 4
Do you know that career burnout is caused by overworking and lack of time to recharge? This article talks about how career burnout happens, what the signs are and how you can recognise when you are suffering from it.
Did you know that more than 50% of workers in the US are unhappy with their jobs. Being unhappy in what you do ultimately leads to burnout, affecting your productivity, mental and physical health.
Burnout is more common than we think. In fact, 85% of employees, according to a 2021 research by Oracle, believe that their companies are not doing enough for the workers. Burnout is a state of psychological, emotional, or physical exhaustion with a decreased sense of accomplishment and loss of personal identity.
“The No. 1 cause of burnout is doing the same thing over and over again and not seeing results.” - Steve Kaczmarski
When Burnout Is A Sign You Should Leave Your Job
Everyone has the right to do the things that help them grow and get a sense of accomplishment. No one can force anyone to do a job that serves no sense of purpose for them.
However, many often ignore this fundamental right as a human being to have work that enriches and enlivens you rather than tiring you out.
There is a common notion among most businesses that the salary and the other rewards or benefits mentioned in the contract are the only things employees can expect to receive from their work. This, according to the majority, is the only thing owed to the workers.
The above approach makes it unrealistic for employees to expect less-tangible rewards from their jobs, including other opportunities, respect, autonomy, trust, and friendship. So when ultimately the only thing employees get is the pay, it causes burnout. These workplace attitudes and behaviours lead to people being tired of their work and trap them in a job cycle that has nothing to offer.
How Can We Identify Burnout?
Continual exposure to high levels of stress, particularly at the workplace, is one of the most common causes of burnout. The people working in such environments are the most affected ones. If you are experiencing signs that make you tired or unmotivated to work, it may be burnout. The other symptoms are:
Physical, mental, emotional, and psychological exhaustion are all symptoms of burnout. You feel that you never gain anything except the money, your sense of purpose starts diminishing, and your mental health is suffering. You may experience physical symptoms like frequent headaches, stomachaches, nausea, loss of appetite, insomnia, and changes in sleeping patterns.
Feeling overwhelmed is another primary symptom of burnout. You may think that there is no time or energy to socialize or take some time off with friends or family, which will lead to you isolating yourself. A burnt-out person may not participate in social activities with loved ones and even co-workers.
Because a burnt-out person feels that the job is too demanding and consumes most if not all of their time and energy, they may confide in strange escape fantasies. In cases where burnout is extreme, the person may turn towards harmful escapes such as an eating addiction, alcohol addiction etc.
Burnt-out people might lose their temper with friends, loved ones, and co-workers easily. The irritability factor increases as a manifestation of their feeling that nothing they do is enough or nothing ever seems to work. Routine tasks such as meetings, dealing with children, and usual household tasks may feel demanding and irritating.
Like other long-term stress conditions, burnout can also cause your immune system to become weak. When your immune system becomes more fragile, the chances of you getting sick more frequently than before increase. Burnout can also cause mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression.
Quitting Your Job Because of Burnout
Burnout is no joke. The final most extreme burnout stage may be physical/psychological/emotional collapse. Hence, it is highly likely that you're thinking of quitting your job as it is the leading cause of your burnout.
Let’s discuss this idea further.
First, assess your work conditions before deciding to quit your job. It may be a life-changing decision, but that depends on the actual cause of your burnout. To analyze the situation in a better way, ask yourself the following questions:
Does my job provide me with the opportunity to be the best version of myself?
How well does my job align with my interests?
Is the job according to or against my values?
What non-contractual benefits am I getting from my job?
What does my future look like in my job?
What is burnout costing me?
After you’re done asking yourself these questions, you’ll be able to make a more informed decision that would be best suited to your needs. Remember that no one is forcing you to leave your job, and neither are you being forced to stay. It is entirely your decision and should best be based on the questions mentioned above.
Burnout is, unfortunately, a reality of many employees in today’s world. Constant work stress isn’t helping either along and toxic work environments. However, if you adjust yourself either by changing your job or making active efforts in your current position, you can surely combat burnout.
Remember, getting professional help is always a good option.
Where there is rewarding and meaningful work that you actually like to do, in addition to friendly co-workers and employers, you are less likely to be burnt out.
Choose a sustainable career of your dreams and exercise your right to enriching work!