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Managing Workplace Stress: Techniques for Beating End-of-Week Burnout

Picture source: Sigmar Recruitment

Heavy workloads and deadline pressures are a fact of life for managers. Who doesn't sometimes feel overwhelmed or exhausted? But when the unrelenting stress of work pushes you into the debilitating state we call burnout, it's a serious problem that not only affects your own performance and health, both internally and externally, including to your team and organization. Burnout is a feeling that many of us have felt at some point in our working lives. Whether you're a high-level executive, an entrepreneur juggling multiple responsibilities, or a remote worker trying to balance work and home life, the stress of a stressful work week can be overwhelming. can have consequences.

Situational factors are the main cause of burnout. However, there are steps you can take yourself once you become aware of the symptoms and their possible causes.

1. Prioritize self-care

It's essential to replenish your physical and emotional energy and ability to focus by prioritizing good sleep habits, nutrition, exercise, social connection, and practices that promote calmness and wellness. If you have difficulty fitting such activities into your busy schedule, give yourself a week to evaluate exactly how you spend your time. During each period, record what you are doing, who you are with, how you feel, and the value of the activity. This will help you find opportunities to limit your exposure to tasks, people, and situations that are unnecessary and put you in a bad mood; increase your investments in things that boost your energy; and make room for quiet, positive time outside of work.

2. Shift your perspective

So now you need to take a close look at your thoughts and assumptions. What aspects of your situation are actually fixed and what aspects can you change? Changing your perspective can reduce the negative impact of even inflexible aspects. If burnout is a big problem, ask yourself which tasks, even the most important ones, you can delegate to free up your time and energy for other important tasks. Are there ways to reshape your work to have more control or focus on the most rewarding tasks? If cynicism is a big problem, can you protect yourself from the parts of the organization that let you down while still re-engaging in your specific role and the company as a whole? Or can you build positive, supportive relationships to combat the ones that drain you? And if you feel unproductive, what help or development can you seek? If recognition is lacking, could you embark on a personal branding strategy to highlight your work?

3. Reduce exposure to job stressors

You also need to target activities and relationships that are high-value but still cause unhealthy stress. This involves redefining the expectations of colleagues, customers and even family members about what and how much you are willing to take on, as well as the ground rules for working together. You may face resistance, but skeptics should know that you make these changes to improve your long-term productivity and protect your health.

4. Seek out connections

The best antidote to burnout, especially when driven by cynicism and ineffectiveness, is to pursue rich interpersonal interactions and continuous personal and professional development. Find coaches and mentors who can help you identify and activate positive relationships and learning opportunities. Volunteering to mentor others is another particularly effective way to break out of a negative cycle. Because of the influence of situational factors on burnout, it's likely that others in your organization are experiencing it as well. If you come together to offer mutual support, identify problems, brainstorm and advocate for solutions, you will all increase your sense of control and connection.

Source: Harvard Business Review, employment hero

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