Whatever happened to the bright-eyed bushy tail employee who bounded out of bed ready for the day and the job ahead? Cup of Joe and ready to go. Now, he or she is hiding under the covers.
Maybe, this hard worker is suffering burnout. Getting to the job early, staying late, working weekends and then lying in bed at night thinking about work. It’s no joke that all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.
A few years ago, Forbes’ contributor Lisa M. Greary wrote about burnout and a criteria for what defines it, the signs that you — yes, you Mr. and Mrs. Type A workaholic personality — may be suffering from it.
You keep telling yourself, “Hey, this is America 2017. I could be easily out of work in my chosen profession. Double down. Make that quota, make those goals.” Workaholism is a badge of honor, right?
It could, however, be akin to trying to dig yourself out of a hole with a shovel, Greary points out, saying it a lifestyle that is not sustainable.
The American Psychological Association’s David Ballard describes job burnout as “an extended period of time where someone experiences exhaustion and a lack of interest in things, resulting in a decline in their job performance.” Ballard is an expert on healthy and unhealthy workplaces.
Ballard is an expert on healthy and unhealthy workplaces. Here are some signs, he says,, that you may be experiencing burnout:
Exhaustion: Emotional, mental or physical. It’s the sense of not having any energy, of being completely spent.
Lack of Motivation: Do you wake up in the morning and think, “Kill me now?” You are suffering from this ailment in which there is nothing that gets you enthusiastic anymore. It’s the off-ramp to clinical depression. Beware.
Cynicism: Ah, that cancer in the workplace. With burnout it is rampant. Frustration turns to negative emotions and pessimism. You become disillusioned with everything. You walk around like FBI Agent Mulder from the X-Files, muttering, “Trust No One.”
Cognitive Problems: Hey, the brain is saying, “I’m outta here.” You can’t pay attention or concentrate. You’ve been spinning plates and they are about to come crashing down. Ballard says, “Our bodies and brains are designed to handle stress in short bursts,” but when stress becomes chronic our ability to multi-task goes out the window.
All of this leads to slipping job performance and problems at home, as well as work. Greary wrote to combat burnout it is imperative to get enough sleep, be organized, stay attuned to your body and stress and cultivate a rich non-work life.