Addressing Burnout: The Problem with Passion
At the end of the day, we all want to go home feeling inspired and fueled by a day of purposeful engagement and passionate work. But what if we are already at home? And how does one remain passionate when their work exists in the vague and intangible realm of the digital world? We all experience ebbs and flows and then abruptly, a wall.
So, what is burnout? According to WHO it is characterized by three dimensions: 1) feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion; 2) increased mental distance from one’s job, or feelings of negativism or cynicism related to one’s job; and 3) reduced professional efficacy.
Working in philanthropy provides a forum for purpose-driven work that can do more to significantly increase your risk of burnout. Why? Because despite there being benefits to doing what you love, data show that being passionate about your work can also lead to a higher level of stress and feelings of low self-efficacy. Mission-focused executives, non-profit employees, teachers/principals, nurses, and physicians are some of the people most at-risk for burnout.
I want to reach out to the community and ask what are some ways we can prevent ourselves, colleagues, and loved ones from exhaustion, fatigue, and burnout? Research shows that setting boundaries is a good first step in better serving yourself. If you are a leader then empathy is the first phase in preventing burnout in your team. What strategies are you employing to minimize burnout for both yourself and those around you?