Tim walks into his boss’s office saying that he’d like a raise since he had been doing the job of 3 people. His boss says, “I can’t give you a raise but if you tell me who those other 2 are, I’ll fire them” In these unstable economic times, it is not uncommon to have scenarios just like this one occurring. With companies hiring slowly or not at all, employees are feeling record high levels of stress or it’s more extreme form – burnout.
We all go through periods of stress but burnout is the result of a prolonged period of stress. Burnout is characterized by a loss of motivation, ideas, creativity, and often results in a general sense of powerlessness. Stress can feel more like hyperactivity while burnout is akin to a total collapsing of life force energy.
Some physical signs of burn out include: indigestion, sleep issues, fatigue, chest pains, and headaches.
Emotional signs: feelings of depression, anxiousness, helplessness, or hopelessness
Behavioral signs: substance (of all types) abuse, isolation, high reactivity
Do you feel that what you spend your work hours on is pointless, meaningless, or overwhelming? Do you feel that no one really cares or appreciates what you do at work? Are you suffering from more pain, aches, or cold symptoms on Monday mornings? Are you living your life from weekend to weekend?
A few months ago, a national survey was published reporting that Americans are suffering from burnout due to a variety of factors. 61% stated that they felt burned out all the time and worried about their jobs most of the day. Only 14% said that their workloads were manageable. Some felt stuck because they felt that they were in jobs with little room for advancement. Because middle aged workers are pushing back retirement, younger employees feel that they won’t be able to be promoted. During hard economic times companies lay off workers but the remaining ones are expected to work harder to make up the workload.
I have worked primarily with women who weren’t satisfied with their careers and felt the call for more meaningful work. The fears of failing to create work that pays the bills while fulfilling their creative spirits, is palpable. Once they overcome their fears, they can’t imagine ever going back to 9 to 5 corporate jobs. I’ve also worked with people who had burnout due to personality conflicts with bosses or co-workers. Once these were cleared, their workplace issues vanished, they received promotions, and were overall happier at the office.
Here are some tapping suggestions to help you heal from sources of stress or burnout:
- Tap on the need to be a perfectionist at work (along with all roots of this pressure from childhood conditioning). This may be connected to any fears of delegating tasks to others that would result in a lack of control of projects or outcomes.
- Tap on negativity you feel about your job.
- Tap on the feeling that you aren’t recognized or appreciated for your efforts for a job well done.
- Tap on the fear that you might be feeling about having a conversation with your boss about your job expectations.
- Tap on feelings of helplessness about certain people in the office who create chaos or pressure for you.
- Tap on resistance to radical self-care including eating well, getting sufficient sleep or taking vacations.
- Tap on the fear of saying “no” to others who expect too much from you at work (again, it is essential to find the earliest roots of not being able to do this)
Burnout can be a blessing in disguise. By listening to what your mind and body are telling you about what isn’t working in your life, you always have a golden opportunity to change it into something that is fulfilling instead.