Stress in small doses is manageable. When it's all at once, however, stress can seem intolerable, especially when it comes from the workplace.
If you're burning the candle at both ends, you're not alone. According to a recent survey conducted by Monster Canada, nearly 60 per cent of Canadians say they feel overworked.
As explained by Monster Canada General Manager Angela Payne, workers recognize they have to perform to meet expectations, and this pressure can feel overwhelming when it's not managed properly.
"60% of Canadians feel overworked."
One in Four Have Left Their Jobs Due to High Stress
Burnout doesn't only adversely affect the emotional and physical well-being of the people that experience it, but also productivity for employers. Approximately one in four Canadians acknowledge having quit their jobs because the stress was too much to bear. When including those who've considered leaving, that share jumps to over one-third of Canada's labour force.
While quitting a job may serve as a temporary solution, stress management experts say that it's not a cure-all, given that many positions have stressful aspects. Thus, the key to feeling better isn't to avoid stress altogether but to understand how to recognize it and apply the appropriate self-care solutions so anxiety lessens.
In an interview with Forbes, Dr. David Ballard, head of American Psychological Association's healthy workplace program, explained that burnout can manifest itself in a number of ways, but some of the most common symptoms include physical and mental exhaustion, a sudden lack of motivation, irritability, cognitive problems like inability to concentrate and reduced productivity at the workplace. Burnout can also affect personal relationships with friends or at home with family members, when an individual becomes irritable or avoids social interactions.
When it comes to managing stress, consider these tips:
Make Relaxation a Priority
There are a variety of strategies you can employ to prevent burnout. The most important of all is taking time to relax. Although it may sound obvious, many people underestimate the importance of unwinding at the end of the day. Even if you're not feeling especially "on edge," reading a book, listening to music or simply vegging out on the sofa is key to staying balanced.
Go to Bed Earlier
Sleep deprivation is an epidemic and is a chief contributor to burnout. Sleep is the body's natural way of recharging the batteries. Experts advise getting at least seven hours of shuteye each night.
Be More Self Aware
Is your neck sore? Are you experiencing headaches? Is your stomach tied in knots? These are physical manifestations of burnout. Make sure you're attuned to your body's reactions so you can recognize it early on.
Responsibilities are unavoidable. But burnout is. Recognizing the symptoms and implementing the appropriate fixes can help you tackle stress before it takes over.