40 PROFESSIONAL WOMANS MULTICULTURAL MAGAZINE WWW.PROFESSIONALWOMANMAG.COM
eelings of burnout are common - when work and other demands in your life get too intense, or if you dont get enough time to rest, you can start feel- ing physically, emotionally or mentally exhausted. The symptoms are real, yet some doctors say burn- out is not a clinical disorder. Its not a diagnosable condition, Air Force Lt. Col. Daniel Gross, flight commander at the 633rd Medical Group at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, in Hampton, Va., said. Instead, it is a syndrome that results in response to running out of energy and emptying the tank, Gross said. It occurs when an individual has an imbalance between responsibility and task compared to the opportunity to rest and recharge. Some workers may be at high risk for burnout, regardless of their career field, especially when indi- vidual or unit operations tempo gets very high. You might see reduced stress tolerance, increased irritability, decreased job performance or relationship stress as a result of running on empty as a result of burning out, Gross said. Additionally, you might be at risk for burning out when you dont take time to take care of your- self, set emotional boundaries or establish a healthy work-life balance, Nancy Skopp, a clinical psychol- ogist and lead researcher for the Health Services & Population Research program at the Defense Health Agencys Psychological Health Center of Excellence, said. According to Skopp, there are three key dimen- sions of burnout: 1. Overwhelming exhaustion. 2. Feelings of cynicism and detachment from the job. 3. A sense of ineffectiveness and lack of accom- plishment. Skopp describes burnout as an individual stress experience within a social context. Burnout appears to be particularly common in unsupportive work environments characterized by low morale and teamwork, inefficient workplace pro- cesses, excessive workloads and negative leadership behavior, Skopp explained. Every career field has unique challenges and unique resources, Gross said. I dont know that theres one particular area which is at greater risk or vulnerability. The good news is that burnout can be mitigated. There are numerous steps that individuals and leaders
Feeling Burned Out at Work?
Here are Some Tips to Feel Better
By Claudia Sanchez-Bustamante
can take to reduce burnout and its impact. Its especially important that leaders pay attention to their teams. Leaders should make sure that they have a good understanding of the demands on their [team], Gross said, and that they do a good job of helping mitigate that [burden], at the same time as managing the down- time and the recovery time for their team members. Skopp says some tips for leaders trying to mini- mize burnout might include: ! Monitor work environment and morale ! Cultivate workplace cohesion and a culture of teamwork ! Use rewards and incentives in a consistent and order to be okay, and what we think they needed is not what they need. Individuals should try to take care of themselves to prevent or reduce burnout. Skopp provided the fol- lowing tips: ! Eat well - maximize nutrition, minimize processed foods ! Make time for relaxation, leisure and fun activities ! Exercise regularly - even if its just 10 or 15 minutes on a busy day ! Develop good sleep habits - aim for between seven and nine hours ! Set up a wind-down ritual to facilitate rest fair manner ! Provide resources to promote self-care ! Monitor workloads and ensure enough time in the workday to complete required tasks ! Reduce inefficient workplace processes In some cases, a key step might be asking a simple question. Ask them what they need and help them to get it, Gross suggests. All too often, I think that, as leaders, we give [team members] what we think they need in ! Establish protective boundaries and respect your emotional needs ! Separate work life and personal life ! Cultivate a sense of humor ! Build strong working relationships with co- workers ! Recognize the signs of distress and seek help when needed
Source: Department of DefensePrevious Page