Burnout is on the rise, but you can balance your life again

Workers standing on currency
Posted at 8:21 AM, Jul 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-21 18:22:47-04

TAMPA, Fla. — Despite restrictions finally being lifted after more than a year of isolation and wearing masks; many people still feel tremendous burnout in their life with everything still out of balance and pushed to the edge.

But a social worker and teacher at Stanford University said there are things you can do right now to help you climb out of that burnout and balance your life again.

"Some of the signs of burnout look a lot like workaholism, where we're driven to work more and more. And kind of the more anxious we get, we throw ourselves into work and start to neglect the other components of our life," explained Dr. Leah Weiss, a social work therapist, and teacher at Stanford Graduate School.

Weiss said after a year of this pandemic, burnout looks different for each person depending on where you are in the spectrum.

"Early burnout can look like working more and more. Middle burnout? A lot of cynicism. A lot of feeling like you can't make any changes in your environment. And then high in the burnout spectrum, there's different profiles," she explained. "But it can look like depression or anxiety, and it can lead to a complete collapse."

And burnout is on the rise possibly due to companies eliminating positions, employees doing more work than before, and finding it difficult to balance their life. So Weiss said employers need to check on their employee's personal well-being.

"Encourage your people to take their time off. We are all running on empty. That is going to be huge," she said.

And she recommends managers must model the behavior and walk the walk.

"Are you e-mailing people all hours of the night and on weekends? Are you showing people that you value sustainable approaches to work? Or are you burning yourself out and showing everyone that's your expectation for them?" she asked.

And Weiss believes the work setting must change for good.

"I'm really an advocate of compassion and humanizing the workplaces, not just because it's a nice thing to do, which it is. But because it also leads to better outcomes for your organization," Weiss said. "You'll have people who are more committed, who care more, who work with more productivity and engagement."

In 2019, Weiss co-founded Skylyte , a company that uses neuroscience and behavior change to empower leaders and managers in preventing burnout for themselves and their team.

And they developed a resilience quiz, that's free and only takes two minutes to help identify your strengths and risks.

For more information on that, click here.