Even when working your dream job, burnout is a possibility. Unfortunately, the more you love your job, the more likely it is you’ll spend hours working and striving to improve your performance. As time goes by, any semblance of work-life balance may be destroyed, and you will have no time or energy for anything else in your life, including your own health and wellness. This is a classic case of burnout as those who experienced multiple, chronic stressors are left totally drained with a lack of Interest and declining job performance. If left unchecked, burnout can be disastrous to your health, relationships and job performance. You may be experiencing burnout if you have these signs:
- Lack of motivation
- Problems thinking and processing
- Declining job performance
- Interpersonal problems at home or work
- Preoccupation with work, even when you’re not at work
- Decreasing job satisfaction
- Declining health
It is important to address stress reduction in your life before you begin to experience these symptoms, as prevention is much easier than treatment. Malcolm Forbes once said, “If you have a job without any aggravations, you don’t have a job.”
Most jobs entail some stress, but many medical professionals experience more stress since they usually work long hours in understaffed facilities dealing with ill patients and their families. Unfortunately, another symptom of burnout is the perception of having little control over your life.
The physiological response to a psychological stress is real and may trigger long-term negative health problems such as headaches, heartburn, high blood pressure and allergic skin reactions. In one case study, researchers found a lack of workplace stress management strategies increased the perception of stress and affected emotional and mental status. Here are some simple strategies you can use on a daily basis to reduce both your stress level and the potential for burnout.
Experts agree a regular workout routine helps reduce the effects of stress on the body. Additionally, it helps build resistance to the release of cortisol, a stress hormone, when you are under stress. Physical activity improves your overall health and reduces your risk for many chronic diseases.
Sleep and Nutrition
Your body needs eight hours of quality sleep each night and a healthy, balanced diet to offset the physical and psychological stressors you encounter at work. Reducing the potential for burnout does not mean you will not experience stress. The stressors will not go away, but with a strong foundation, your body will withstand the pressure and it won’t affect your health.
Laughter truly is the best medicine and even oncologists prescribe laughter for their patients since they know it helps boost the immune system. Humor is also important in handling career stress as laughter helps you bond with other nurses in an informal way, as well as reduce your cortisol secretion and therefore the effect of stress.
Doing Something You Love
Hobbies and other creative outlets are great ways to give your mind a break from the stress you experience at work. Cooking, family time, crafting or reading are all ways you can have fun with friends or family, enjoy some physical activity and a mental release.
While most outside the medical profession are unable to fully grasp what happens on a day-to-day basis, spending quality time with family or friends can help relieve your job-related stress. This does not have to be a formal support group as any group of supportive friends or family can help you work through challenging times.
Ready to Eliminate Stress?
At Anodyne, we are committed to helping our staff reduce stress and prevent burnout. Contact our professional recruiters today and we’ll help you find your next assignment.