Friday, April 15, 2011

Preventing Career Burnout

Most workers experience career burnout at one time or another; however, prolonged signs of career burnout lasting a month or more can be serious—and damaging. Career burnout can be self-induced and/or caused by outside factors. For example, working in a fast-paced, stressful environment where employee accomplishments are often overlooked can lead to career burnout. Conversely, employees with pessimistic dispositions who take no responsibility for directing their own careers cause their own burnout.

Before you can address career burnout, you need to be aware of the symptoms. Following is a sampling of symptoms:

  • · Exhaustion, chronic fatigue, no motivation
  • · Anxiety
  • · Boredom
  • · Indifference
  • · Frequent bad days
  • · Feeling unappreciated or worthless

Plenty of techniques exist for preventing or combating career burnout. The list below can help. As you review these options, consider how well each will work based on your particular personality and/or situation.

· Stretch yourself: Volunteer on a project team, write an article for an internal company newsletter or trade journal, propose a new idea.

· Expand your network: Reach out to professionals inside and outside your company. Make it a goal to have lunch once a month with someone you’d like to get to know better.

· Learn from and/or teach others: Check into whether your company or industry association has a mentor/mentee program. If not, consider establishing a mentor/mentee relationship. Either one almost always leads to great learning experiences.

· Be grateful: Each day note a few things you are thankful for. Having an attitude of gratitude is bound to spill over at work.

· Emphasize career goals: Set career goals and monitor your progress. Besides giving you more control over your career, this will most likely cause you to pursue things that interest you.

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