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Feeling burned out? Try these solutions

Summer is almost over, which probably means you’re exhausted

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Takeaways:

  • “Burnout” is a phrase used commonly for professionals who don’t know when to take a break.
  • There are three types of burnout: overload burnout, boredom burnout and just plain old worn-out burnout.
  • Life isn’t all about work. Focus on personal achievements by working on a side project.

You’ve heard the term, most likely from a family or friend expressing concern over your long work hours. “Burnout” is a phrase used commonly for professionals who don’t know when to take a break. But burnout doesn’t always occur for the same reason or exhibit the same symptoms from one individual to another.

The Wikipedia definition of burnout is a term that “refers to long-term exhaustion and diminished interest in work. Burnout has been assumed to result from chronic occupational stress (for example, work overload).”

The many faces of burnout

According to Psychologicalscience.org, there are three types of burnout: overload burnout, boredom burnout and just plain old worn-out burnout.

Overload burnout occurs due to stress from working too much. This is most commonly seen in real estate agents who refuse to put their responsibilities aside, even for a brief moment.

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Boredom burnout is known as an avoidance coping strategy. Underchallenged employees distance themselves from their responsibilities and goals.

Worn-out burnout causes agents to simply give up when they feel stressed and usually affects people who have goals but lack the motivation to achieve them.

The general symptoms of burnout

If you feel like you may be suffering from a form of burnout, keep an eye out for these telling signs:

1. Mood swings and irritability

2. Dietary changes

3. Isolation

4. Difficulty focusing

5. Lack of energy

How to fight burnout

First, try journaling your thoughts. Writing emotions down on paper is a proven coping mechanism that helps you feel like you’re purging negative thoughts.

It’s also significantly easier to identify the negatives in your life when they are written down, providing you the evidence you need to eliminate those feelings from your life before they can affect your professional career.

Regular exercise is not only physically beneficial, but can help combat the feelings of stress that may lead to burnout at work. An increased heart rate releases toxins from your blood stream and helps decrease anxieties about your job or life in general.

Don’t expect results right away, though. Start small if you don’t already exercise on a regular basis to avoid injury or self doubt.

Life isn’t all about work. Focus on personal achievements by working on a side project like a charity run. Or consider picking up a new stress-relieving hobby, such as painting or crafting.

Psychologist Abraham Maslow said individuals can only be happy if they are able to express themselves and achieve their potential (1943). Self-actualization is just as important as success at work.

Burnout shouldn’t be taken lightly. Take this test to see if you’re suffering before it infiltrates your emotional and physical well-being.

Email Jennifer Riner.