Establish a Sustainable Work Environment and Avoid Burnout
Amidst a tumultuous post-pandemic reorganisation at her company, one of my clients was promoted to a new position. Navigating the constant change and uncertainty has been challenging without the support of a fully operational team. To make matters worse, many talented people have left the organisation, leaving a dearth of skilled personnel. As a result, achieving even basic operational goals has been an uphill battle for my client, let alone implementing a comprehensive strategic plan.
The situation has taken a significant toll, both on my client and her team, who are being pushed to their limits while working with limited resources. Despite the daunting challenges, they are still expected to deliver results at a pace that matches their pre-restructuring capacity. This has caused considerable physical exhaustion and strain. What can be done to avoid burnout and keep going under such circumstances?
Symptoms of Burnout
Many organisations are still recovering from the impact of lockdown. So many people left the workplace during the pandemic, and have not returned. They choose not to return to a work environment that, frankly, does not serve them. That’s led to a shortage of talented staff. And an even more unhealthy workplace. It’s been difficult to replace them — if you’ve been able to at all.
With a scaled-down workforce, you and your team are diligently striving to maintain productivity despite the increased workload and responsibilities. Ensuring that routine operations run smoothly has been an uphill battle. It’s emotionally and physically exhausting for you and your team that will surely lead to burnout. However, as a leader, it falls on you to also make time for crucial strategic work. And there never seems time for that all important strategic work that you, in your leadership role, are expected to deliver.
You know you can’t carry on like this much longer. The warning signs of burnout are there. Stressed. Tired. Can’t switch off, even when you get home. Your loved ones hardly see you and when they do, you’re irritable. Out of sorts. No energy to give them the care and attention they deserve. It’s a recipe for burnout.
What if you could shift your current situation? Reclaim your time, recover your energy levels and balance? You’d have the energy, the enthusiasm — and the precious time to strategise — so you and your team could improve your work environment for the long term.
Creating a more sustainable and inclusive workplace will help to attract and retain top-tier talent, thus easing the workload and alleviating pressure on both you and your team. But such efforts require time and planning. In the meantime, the challenges of the present continue to demand your attention, and you must persevere, doing your best to navigate the obstacles and keep moving forward.
Take a Break
You could take some much needed vacation time. A holiday somewhere warm to escape the cold dreary days of February. A well-deserved break of at least two weeks is recommended, as the first week is typically required to unwind and shift away from work mode. It is in the second week that you can start to recharge your batteries. That would certainly revive you. Choose your holiday well, and you’d come back refreshed, revitalised.
For a time. Once back in the fray, you soon find yourself caught up in the same situation. You feel overwhelmed. To avoid that happening, you could take up meditation or yoga. Block out time in your crazy busy diary and make restoring your energy and balance a priority. I think we all know how well that would pan out over time…
Sustainable You, Sustainable Work Environment
Alternatively you could talk to me and discover, as my client did, a few simple exercises to reclaim your time, restore your energy and balance, and prevent burnout. Exercises that take no more than a minute or two to work their magic. That helps take care of your emotional and physical wellbeing.
But to make this work, not just for you, but for everyone, we’d work together to ensure you connect with your authentic power. From there, you can begin to change your work environment so that it is more inclusive and sustainable. Indeed a work environment that allows everyone to flourish.
Contact me and let’s get you fit for purpose. Restore your mental health. Restore the health of your work environment. Live your purpose; make the difference only you can make for a better world.
For more about me and my leadership coaching, visit my blog here. You may also wish to join The Female Leader’s Collective on Facebook, where you can share your challenges, support and be supported by other women in the group.