How to avoid career burnout

22 Oct 2020

Company culture

Claire Crompton

Claire Crompton

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Who doesn’t have great ambitions? It could be in your home life, your hobbies or your career, but ambition is the fuel to the fire, and something that everybody needs. 

But being ambitious and striving for more shouldn’t have to come at great costs, especially to your mental wellbeing. But when deadlines loom, clients come and go, when colleagues let you down and expectations aren’t met, it can be almost impossible to not become stressed-out and burnt-out. 

If simply reading that sentence sent your anxiety skyrocketing, then take a breather. You may be on the edge of career burnout. To help you out, let’s take a look at a few things you can do to keep yourself on the right track, no matter what your career throws at you. You may not be in control of outcomes, but you are 100% in control of your efforts.

1. Time management

Perhaps one of, if not, the most important factor to get on top of to avoid a career burnout is time management. If you lose grip of this, you’re set on course for a stressful, chaotic phase. Diaries, calendars and to-do lists are your best friends! 

For example, our content team – who often find themselves stacked up to the eyeballs – need to have everything clearly laid out in their diaries. Who is working on which piece of content marketing, and when? Or what spectacular piece of Digital PR are they completing today? By having absolutely everything diarised, nothing can fall through the cracks.

Plan, plan, and plan some more. If you aren’t already in the habit of jotting things down, tidying up diaries and planning ahead, then make it a priority if you’re feeling pretty run-down as of late. You’ll benefit from it in no time and quickly see results, as you can work towards deadlines more efficiently as well as stay on top of meetings, tasks and schedules. 

2. Rewards

Set yourself mini rewards – maybe even slot them into your diary – for when you complete long, hard tasks or projects. Not only does it give you something to look forward to, but it will help you keep a better work/life balance. You’ll also feel tonnes better only allowing yourself these treats and rewards once certain things have been accomplished – reducing stress and guilty regret. Plus, having them at the forefront of your mind will push you and motivate you even more to get ahead and on top of work.

3. Self-care and mental health

Especially when work schedules are full, noisy and seemingly never ending, making time for unwinding and self-care is vital. We often forget to plan in and make time for ourselves, or not give it much thought, when it’s actually the most important thing we should be planning for. Whether it’s a comedy clip, a scroll through social media, a stroll through a park, an indulgence in your favourite food, make time for relaxing and for your own mental wellness. 

4. Goals

Sometimes you can be left feeling apathetic and unmotivated with work, which is why having goals is so important. Knowing what you’re working towards, what all your efforts are going into is more fulfilling and helps improve your drive. Make them achievable by giving realistic time frames and don’t pressure yourself too much. 

5. Personal development plans

If you haven’t already got a personal development plan (PDP), try to set one up with your employer or work on one yourself. Not only is this paramount in monitoring your progression, it’s great for showing evidence to your employer and referring back to when you want to highlight your strengths, as well as work on areas for improvement. No matter what is going on in your career, a PDP is a positive, motivating and effective way to keep you on track and to stay ahead – avoiding those dreaded burnouts.

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