The longer you leave workplace burnout, the harder it is to recover from. When you’re burnt out, the world looks bleak and everything feels too hard, and it’s difficult to muster up the energy to care — let alone do something to help yourself.
Dismissing the warning signs and ‘soldiering on’ in this state can have devastating effects. In some cases ignoring burnout, can lead to serious chronic fatigue symptoms. It can take years to recover.
The unhappiness and detachment that burnout causes can threaten your job, your relationships, and your health. However, by recognizing the earliest warning signs, you can take steps to prevent burnout. Or if you’ve already hit a breaking point, there are plenty of things you can do to regain your balance and start to feel positive and hopeful again.
What are the warning signs of Workplace Burnout?
- Performance is one of the biggest indicators of burnout. You may find it starts out with a vague lack of concentration and forgetfulness, but as time goes on and as problems pile up, this fogginess can contribute to anxiety and exhaustion.
- Fatigue. The latter stages, you feel physically and emotionally exhausted, drained, and depleted, and you may feel a sense of dread for what lies ahead on any given day. People feel as if “their tank is empty”. They have nothing more to give.
- Depression. Do you feel like every day is a bad day? Feeling helpless, resentful and lacking in energy for an extended period of time can lead to severe depression. You should seek professional help immediately if you
- Absenteeism and Presenteeism: Exhaustion and work stress can cause chronic illness and increases presenteeism: where people are so exhausted at work that they are not really present or productive when they are there
- Anxiety. Early on, you may experience mild symptoms of tension, worry, and edginess. As you move closer to burnout, the anxiety may become so serious that it interferes in your ability to work productively and may cause problems in your personal life.
- Anger. At first, this may present as interpersonal tension and irritability. In the latter stages, this may turn into angry outbursts and serious arguments at home and in the workplace. If you feel you are a danger to yourself or someone else, please seek help immediately.
What can I do about Workplace Burnout?
Intensive wellbeing program like The Buttery Private, for example, have been specifically designed for people to recover from burnout when they can no longer function normally.
General Manager of The Buttery’s therapeutic programs, Trent Rees, said: “The people we’re seeing are achieving at work but are also showing signs of anxiety and becoming overwhelmed by stress. They’re often at the point where others are noticing that they’re drinking, using drugs including prescription drugs or gambling or gaming too much.”
The new early intervention program to help people “reset” their thinking patterns and lifestyle habits and learn to manage stress in healthier ways.
Workplace mental stress costs an estimated $10 billion a year in Australia. Exhaustion and work stress can cause chronic illness and increases presenteeism: where people are so exhausted at work that they are not really present or productive when they are there.
“The Buttery Private is an early intervention for people who are still functioning well enough but who could benefit from taking time out to address issues, including stress, anxiety, depression, burnout and substance misuse,” said Mr Rees.
The four-week residential program is conducted at an idyllic retreat near Byron Bay.
Each participant works with their personal clinician to develop a customised program addressing their specific needs. After a four-week stay, participants continue working with their therapist via phone or Skype to ensure they can apply what they learn from the program to their daily lives so they do not fall back into self-limiting behaviour.
The Buttery Private offers more than a typical health retreat because it uses best-practice psychological techniques to bring about lasting change. It is a circuit-breaker to change entrenched patterns of self-defeating behaviour. To do this, it incorporates current research on the neuroscience of trauma, anxiety and the brain’s response to threat.
As well as regular one-on-one counselling with a dedicated counsellor and group sessions, participants can choose from a range of other therapies including yoga, meditation, mindfulness training, exercise, massage, acupuncture and nutrition.
“The Buttery Private program is based on The Buttery’s program which has been developed and refined for over forty years, helping people achieve more healthy, meaningful lives. Everyone deserves to reach their full potential free form self-limiting behaviours and The Buttery Private program is designed to achieve that,” said Mr Rees.
As a not-for-profit charity, The Buttery will apply surplus funds generated from The Buttery Private to its charitable works, which include a residential rehab, programs for youth at risk and a free family counselling program.