What is burnout syndrome and how do you know whether you’re affected by it?
This year, the World Health Organization (WHO) expanded on its definition of Burnout – which they only officially recognised last year.
Please note: it is listed in the ‘International Classification of Diseases’ as an occupational phenomenon or syndrome rather than a medical condition or disease.
WHO defines burnout as:
“A syndrome…resulting from chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed.” It comprises three aspects…
- ‘Feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion.’
- ‘Increased mental distance from one’s job or feelings of negativism or cynicism related to one’s job.’
- And ‘reduced professional efficacy.’
In this case, burnout only applies in an occupational context. In other words, any non-work overwhelm or exhaustion isn’t taken into account.
WHO will soon develop guidelines to help boost mental wellness at work.
Certain roles and working environments place you at greater risk. Harvard Business Review describes a number of possible factors. These include:
- ‘Unrealistically high workloads’
- A poor sense of job control
- Bullying and ‘incivility’
- ‘Administrative hassles’
- Poor social support
- Reduced business resources
- Stressed business leaders
- Alongside negative ‘leadership behaviours’
If this all sounds far too familiar, you may want to read their article in full. After all, it includes a number of questions to help you decide whether to stay in your role. As they suggest, sometimes a new job is the best solution.
Further burnout resources…
- More symptoms (alongside the many ways burnout can affect your health and relationships).
- Four prevention tips.
- How remote and flexible working can contribute to the syndrome…
- And burnout’s relationship with ‘guilty vacation syndrome.’
Feeling there may be a better role to suit your career goals and lifestyle needs? Start your job search here.