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8 Ways to Control or Overcome Job Stress and Burnout

If you are under continual stress at work or you feel like life is “pressing down” on you and it’s beginning to affect your health and well-being, it may be time to step back and assess your situation.

If you feel empty, apathetic or unhappy and just don’t care anymore, you may be burnt out. If you lack motivation to go to work, feel trapped or just simply lack desire or drive when it comes to your work—it might be time to re-evaluate your future.

What causes stress and/or burnout on the job?

There are a number of reasons why you might be feeling stressed or burnt out when you’re at work or even after your work day is done. Check any that apply to you:

Unrealistic expectations from your boss or even yourself

Do you work long hours and never seem to catch up? Do you always have too much work to do and never enough time?  Is this self-imposed or workplace imposed?

A continual increase in job responsibilities

Are you always asked to take on more and more at work?  Does this increase in responsibilities usually include additional support staff?  Are you required to work long hours to complete your tasks, frequently working more than 40 hour weeks?

Working under a micromanaging boss

Do you feel that your boss is always looking over your shoulder, telling you how or when to do things? Do you feel that you are not trusted to make decisions on your own?

Repetitive, unchallenging or boring work

Do you have a job that requires little thought and creativity, one that rarely changes and offers little challenge?  Do you like what you are doing?

Feeling “stuck” in a job or career that is not your ideal

Do you love your work?  Do you look forward to going to work each day?   Does it make your heart sing?

You feel safe and like the security even if not as valued as you once were 

Have you worked for the company forever and feel safe and secure and don’t want to take risks? You may have a long history of loyalty to a company, but are no longer receiving expected promotions or raises so don’t feel as valued which can result in burnout or apathy.

Are you consumed by your job, so that your job goes home with you?

You take work home with you and once the family is taken care of, you jump back into hours of work to stay caught up. You may even fall asleep thinking about work and have little joy or no real outside life.

Do you work in an oppressive environment?

Do you have problems either with difficult, disrespectful or harassing boss or co-workers?  Is your manager unrealistic and unsupportive?  Are there strict company rules that allow for no creativity or individual expression?

If any of the above ring true for you, there are many things you can to do adjust or correct the situation so you can begin to live a life you desire vs one you feel stressed or burned out in.

8 Solutions for Job Stress and Burnout

  1. Manage your stress with exercise. Exercise is one of the great stress-reducers; anything that gets your heart rate up. Walking, jogging or aerobics for higher intensity. Or try yoga or deep-breathing exercises are also great ways to reduce stress.
  2. Take up a new hobby: Or put some time into an old one. By committing time to doing something you love, you will feel happier and have more satisfaction in your daily life. And if you do this by attending classes or joining a social community or group, it adds even more fun to the activity because it is always more fun with others. You will find it will motivate you even more to get out and do it on a regular basis.
  3. Find what’s right. When a person looks for and finds what is right in their work environment and focuses on that, it can change their perspective and outcomes. Trust your inner voice. If your work environment is causing the stress, you may consider looking for a new position elsewhere; whether it be at a new company, in a different department or in a different industry all together.
  4. Learn to say “no.” So often people take on more than they can handle at work because they are afraid of telling their managers the truth: “I am too overloaded to take this on.”
  5. Refuse to take work home with you. Leave it at the door. When you go home, be present at home. This takes practice if it has become a habit. You have to consciously tell yourself no when you begin to pack up at the end of the day.
  6. Talk to your boss and ask for some changes to your work load or job description. Be open, honest and straightforward on how you feel and you may be surprised with their response. If that doesn’t work…
  7. Change jobs. If you feel trapped or unhappy in your job, you don’t have to be there. No matter how old you are, you can still change careers. You can start today, while you are still working in your current job. You can begin to prepare yourself for a career or job transition. I can promise you that once you begin taking steps towards a new career, you will find yourself infused with new vigor.
  8. Hire a career coach. A good career coach can help you determine what your true gifts are, what will make your heart sing and how to prepare for that transition, even if it is polar opposite from what you do today. They can help you with tools for presenting yourself in a way so that employer can see the advantages of hiring you. They can also help you feel confident in the interviewing process and will advise you on what to look for and what questions to ask, so you know you are getting into a new environment that you will love.

About the Author Marla Williams

Marla Williams is an intuitive life, career and business coach who has experienced tremendous success guiding individuals, professionals and entrepreneurs through a groundbreaking process to discover their purpose and capitalize on their distinctive gifts so they can begin to forge their own unique path in this world. She has a BA in Organizational Development, is a certified life coach, certified project manager and an experienced and certified professional in human resources (PHR) and was a key leader instrumental in helping grow a $12-million-dollar company into a $2.3-billion-dollar company. Connect with Marla through Noomii and her website.

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