Executive Burnout

Burning! What do you imagine when you come across the word? May be a house on fire or charred and ruined homes on a hillside that have been ravaged by a run-away fire? Or do you see majestic mansions once ornate and resplendent in architectural detail now scarred by black soot?

 Burnout is one of the few mental disorders recognised by The Health and Safety Executive UK. Work Safe Australia indicate that burnout caused by too much work contributes to a $20 billion ‘stress bill’ each year.

Medical research indicates that overworked executives need annual ‘mental health checks’ in order to avoid executive burnout, this condition costs business billions of pounds each year in lost productivity and absenteeism.

High achieving executives often do not recognise their slow journey to complete burnout which can affect entire companies and also enter into their family life and relationships.

Burnout syndrome is a condition related to internal burning of the soul due to exhaustion. If your job or some other commitment keeps you completely drained physically or emotionally, and if this situation goes on for weeks, months, or maybe years, you may finally reach the breaking point and fall a victim of burnout.

Burnout is a problem that many people either face or come very close to at some point of their life or career. Burnout is not just stress; it is much more than that. Burnout is a chronic condition that happens when your mind can no longer cope with high demands.

Trapped in a state of emotional exhaustion, it is a state that is hard to get out of. At that state, you stop caring about what you do, even though you are feeling guilty about that fact. Helplessness is a major condition of burnout.

Burnout prevention is very crucial. It may not be easy to get things back on track once you are a victim of burnout. It is much better to be proactive in preventing it now than struggling to put your life back together later if you allow yourself to get burnout.

Now an obvious question is how to prevent burnout? To start with, one must get a time out of daily routine and relax. Get some time to refresh. By doing this not only would you increase your work efficiency, it will also make you concentrate more on your work. For example, meditation is a very useful technique to find inner peace, so you may want to consider learning this practice. Also, communication is a key remedy for stress. Talking and sharing your problems with others is good way to shed out stress. Eating healthy and eight hours of sleep also helps in preventing burnout. Work stress is something which can be prevented by not piling up the work. Procrastination is a key factor of burnout and stress.

Burnout should never be seen as a sign of failure. Lots of executive officers, senior and middle level managers are prone to burnout due to their work load and approach to work. Organizations should have a support system in place to help prevent burnout among their workforce. All in all, the saying that prevention is better than cure, holds true in case of stress and burnout.

If you are experiencing chronic stress and burnout symptoms, then I advise that you seek professional help.


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