This post was inspired by Tatyana Ananyeva up in St.Petes and I think this is such an important issue that it needs addressing. And my friends, believe me, behind the facade of my posts, I have suffered from this more than once.
👉🏻So what is it?
Job burnout is a special type of work-related stress — a state of physical or emotional exhaustion that also involves a sense of reduced accomplishment and loss of personal identity. At times it can become quite severe leading to all sorts of issues. So we need to nip it in the bud (sexy idiom there!).
👉🏻So how do we know we have it? If you answer yes to any of the following issues, you might be suffering from job burnout:
– Have you become cynical or critical at work?
– Do you drag yourself to work and have trouble getting started?
– Have you become irritable or impatient with fellow teachers or students?
– Do you lack the energy to be consistently productive in class?
– Do you find it hard to concentrate?
– Do you lack satisfaction from your achievements?
– Do you feel disillusioned about teaching?
– Are you using food, drugs or alcohol to feel better or to simply not feel?
– Have your sleep habits changed?
– Are you troubled by unexplained headaches, stomach problems, or other physical complaints?
👉🏻 OK, so what are the causes?
– Lack of control. An inability to influence decisions that affect your job — such as your schedule, assignments or workload — could lead to job burnout. So could a lack of the resources you need to do your work.
– Unclear job expectations. If you’re unclear about the degree of authority you have or what your supervisor or others expect from you, you’re not likely to feel comfortable at work.
– Dysfunctional workplace dynamics. Perhaps you work with an bully manager, or you feel undermined by colleagues or your boss micromanages your work. This can contribute to job stress.
– Extremes of activity. When a job is monotonous or chaotic, you need constant energy to remain focused — which can lead to fatigue and job burnout.
– Lack of social support. If you feel isolated at work and in your personal life, you might feel more stressed.
– Work-life imbalance. If your work takes up so much of your time and effort that you don’t have the energy to spend time with your family and friends, you might burn out quickly
👉🏻 So what can we do about it?
– If you have a sympathetic boss or colleague, open up to them and discuss how you’re feeling and try to agree on changes that can be made to your workload, school system etc. Sometimes try to plan your workload in to what is important and what can wait.
– Sport can really help. Doing yoga or a good cardio workout releases the happy hormones which gives you power to tackle issues more effectively. If you have little time for a bit of sport, to to rearrange your schedule to fit it in.
– Dieting can play a vital role, too. By eating the right food and eating rubbish in proportions, your health will improve quickly.
– Doing activities every so often and putting down your work i.e. teaching, you direct your efforts onto something else which helps focus your mind in a fresh way for the next day of teaching.
– I know many will say “But I work in a state school or I am a single parent and must provide for my kids.” I understand that. If you work in a dead-end school or your salary is low and you feel there is no way out…. there always is. And this is the hardest part. Working on your confidence and charisma will allow you to teach more effectively, earning a higher salary and thus able to work less. You’d be more employable and can change jobs with little worry.
👉🏻 So what happened to me?
So how have I coped from burnout? Actually, since January up until the end of February I had burnout. Putting on a brave face and being dynamic every lesson zapped my energy. I was sleeping badly, consuming to much junk food because I was feeling so down that I had little incentive to cook properly. So i realized I had to make drastic changes. So I stopped bodybuilding and took up cross-fit instead to get more cardio exercise three times a week in the morning before work. I cut out sugar as much as I could which enabled me to sleep better. So i had more energy for sport and work. After work in the evenings, I don’t touch work: essays wait till the morning, I reply to people on VK, Instagram etc only in the morning, I don’t sit in front of the computer at all anymore and instead immediately sit in bed reading a book (not about teaching) and I fall asleep. I make sure I sleep before 12 to help maintain my body clock. Just these small steps have personally helped me get back on track. I am a bit more positive than before so i am better equipped to deal with issues)