Work Wellness

How to Recognize Signs of Burnout at Work While Remotely

AutonomousAutonomous | Oct 26, 2021
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Work from home has been challenging for us in more than one way. Although we all admire not getting up early in the morning, commuting for hours, and still reaching late, the latest blur in line between work-life balance leads most of us towards work from home anxiety.

From attending calls in between house chores to staying up late just because 'you are at home,' many employees complain about working even more than they used to in physical offices. This leads to a toll on mental and physical health and hatred towards work life. Although there are many signs of burnout at work, work from home burnout just doesn’t happen all of a sign.

Employee burnout signs start way early before a major breakdown or a serious issue like anxiety or depression diagnosis. This is why it is important to identify the remote work burnout symptoms and look for working from home signs that could lead to the inevitable burnout.

This article will cover some signs of burnout from work which will seriously impact work from home productivity and lead to serious issues if not addressed on time.

What is Work from Home Burnout?

What is Work from Home Burnout

Job burnout is a type of work-related stress which leads an employee to become exhausted from work. Work burnout has many signs, and 52% of the employees experience signs of work burnout in one way or another.

Burnout is a more significant problem than workplace stress. It won't go away if you take a long vacation, calm down, or work fewer hours. The remedy is prevention: proper self-care and work-life balance to avoid burnout from occurring in the first place.

Symptoms of Burnout from Work

With the evidence related to work from home productivity, more organizations are drawn towards shifting to work from home lifestyle. This is very beneficial for both employers and employees, but employee burnout will top out when we talk about work-from-home challenges. This is partly because it is even harder to identify burnout in your dynamic team.

Even if the employees relax at work or maybe get sufficient break time, the signs of burnout at work could be hidden for long. Thus here are some ways to identify if you or your remote team is experiencing work burnout.

Distancing Yourself from Work

Distancing yourself from Work

While it is important to draw a boundary for work-life balance, distancing yourself to alarming degrees is serious. It could be an indication of burnout if you've recently been plagued by procrastination or calling in ill more frequently. It's natural to procrastinate from time to time. However, the World Health Organization (WHO) lists "increasing emotions of negativism or cynicism" as a main symptom of the illness.

Extended Work Hours

Extended work hours are not always an indicator of the golden employee of the year, but it is one of the surest ways to speak about someone's ability to experience burnout soon. If you notice that the staff is coming online very early and is staying late, then it is a sure tell they are stuck all day. This means they have no work-life balance and are bearing the workload.

Not Taking Off

Here is one of the common signs of burnout at work. One might think, an employee feeling work-related burnout may take excessive offs. While that is also true, not taking off and overcompensating yourself on the job is also a clear sign that you are experiencing burnout and hiding the guilt with unhealthy compensation.

Video Conferences

Video Conferences

Sure, you don't meet and greet them every day, but you see them in video conferences. If you find an employee having lower energy levels (constantly) during the calls, or maybe they don't have a rich abundance of ideas as they used to have, then beep, workplace fatigue is getting to them. It is better to communicate with them in such scenarios.

Experiencing Fatigue

This is a sign to tell whether you are experiencing work-related burnout because you are exhausted at all times. Even if you are at home, don't go out or involve in any physical activity. Experiencing exhaustion shows your brain is tired and done. And many types of research prove that the rate of work-related exhaustion has increased by 30% compared to a decade ago.

Losing Focus

Feeling disconnected from work, disillusioned about your contributions, too critical of your job, and impatient, irritable, and quick to rage with coworkers are just a few of the symptoms.  Another important symptom is when you find it hard to complete even the basic of tasks, and every little detail tends to overwhelm you.

No Breaks

No Breaks signs of burnout at work

Other signs of burnout at work on the list go on. Some toxic workplaces indeed consider an employee dedicated or hard-working if they don't take breaks, but the truth is far the opposite. Without frequent breaks, the chances of burnout increase by various folds.

In many situations, remote working has eliminated our regular routines, which means that grabbing a cup of coffee in the break room or sneaking out for lunch with a coworker is no longer an option. Remind employees of their break entitlements and encourage them to take full advantage of them, especially if they work from home.

Mental Block

A mental block is due to many things, but most importantly, not having enough confidence. You may be tempted to give up or believe that it is not worthwhile to put up the effort necessary to complete your task.

You may also find it difficult to get started and stay productive at work since you are frustrated, trapped, and uncreative. Being overwhelmed by your workload and feeling unsatisfied after it's all done fits in here as well.

Deviation from Normal

Deviation from Normal signs of burnout at work

Here is one of the noticeable signs of burnout at work. A sudden deviation from normal in any way is an indicator that something serious is going on. Employees who experience work-related burnout tend to lose sleep or maybe sleep more. They lose their appetite or start consuming more unhealthy food groups. A sudden weight loss or weight gain could also be an indicator of work-related burnout.

How to Address Employee Work Burnout?

How to Address signs of burnout at work

  • Make sure your expectations are clear and realistic and that they are understood
  • Ascertain that person has the resources they require
  • Consistently provide training
  • Demonstrate to employees their worth and contributions to the organization's objectives
  • Enforce normal work hours and provide opportunities for breaks
  • Through video conferences, encourage social support and respect among team members.
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