Feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion?
Have an increased mental distance from your job (brain’s checked out at work)?
Hold a spirit of negativism or cynicism in relation to your job?
Reduced professional efficacy?
Then you may be a statistic now being diagnosed by the WHO. No, not the band but the World Health Organization. Their new diagnostic manual, the ICD-11, list these symptoms as part of diagnosable ‘burnout’. And though these conditions may be in other disorders, burnout should be taken serious. Jobs are demanding more, and providing less; expectations on performance and placing career over life are rising; and the growing gap (social, economic, and status) between upper management and workers leave workers experiencing feelings of lack of being appreciated, expendable, and taken advantage of.
I see this as a pastor – demands increase, appreciation wains, and loneliness can set in. My wife worked as a C-Level EA whose company had a policy of no bonuses for EAs (in spite of all others getting bonuses) and no raises for EAs. Her VP fought for her and we appreciated his desires, but the company set a standard that was forcing some of the workforce to the WHO’s diagnosable burnout.
You too may be experiencing this where you are. Here is the bad news … the WHO doesn’t list how to treat the disorder. So what do we do and where do we go with the WHO?
Let me give some of my ideas …
- Schedule some you time. Short times of disconnect are important. Turn off the phone, get away for a day, walk away from your desk occasionally … making sure you focus on you.
- Take care of your health. Pay attention to pains and aches. They may not just be a bad night sleep, it may be stress related issues. So burn some calories and stay active.
- Get organized. My life is like organized chaos … my wife is better at this than I am. But to-do lists, planned calendar events, and time tables help our psyche amidst the psychos. I miss my paper Franklin-Covey planner.
- Rely on your support system … family, coworkers, church family … don’t be afraid to ask for prayer (that’s victory, not defeat), and mostly, stay in the Word.
- Keep your eyes on Him. We work for a boss bigger than a CEO. Our work and our work efforts may not matter to your supervisor, but they do matter to God. Do all to His glory.
And if all else fails, write a blog and let the world know life gets messy. But God gets us through the messiness.
See the article connected to thee WHO report here.
Personal note: this was written and never published yesterday. Not sure why the app didn’t process it. Maybe it had burnout.