It’s no secret that employees are an organisation’s recipe for success. When employees produce their best work, organisations are more likely to achieve company-wide targets, increase revenue, attract more leads, and many other benefits. However, the last couple of years has sapped energy reserves for leaders and employees, causing many to fall victim to burnout and other mental health issues.
Burnout is so much more than exhaustion. It can encompass a whole range of elements regarding your career, personal relationships and parenting which can lead to you feeling disproportionate, an increased workload, doubting yourself, and lack of support. Yet when you’re in a leadership position, it’s hard to admit when you’re experiencing these feelings for fear of looking weak in the eyes of your team.
However, leaders face these challenges every day, with 61% of leaders in the UK admitting to these challenges and suffering from exhaustion or burnout because of them. As a result, it has become increasingly crucial for businesses to make the well-being of leaders and employees a focal point to minimise the number of people suffering from burnout symptoms. To help you get started, we’ve outlined several ways leaders can take care of themselves below:
As we touched upon briefly in our introduction, leaders are often expected to be self-sufficient, responsible, and resilient; therefore, it can be more challenging for leaders to ask for help when needed. Reaching out in a leadership position is considered to be a bad reflection of your leadership capabilities. Yet, if anything, it demonstrates how even the most successful of us need help sometimes and can help you build better connections/rapport with others.
You could do this by confiding in your senior, a close work colleague, or a family member, or you could consider enlisting the services of a coach who can support you through these tough times and help you set boundaries. Consider getting the support you need by working with a coach on a one-to-one basis or participating in group sessions like the ones provided by i-coach, which enable you to connect with like-minded individuals.
Consultancies like those mentioned above work with businesses and individuals to help them overcome new challenges and rekindle a sense of purpose and meaning in their job roles through their coaching services. Consider learning how they could help you prevent burnout by visiting their website or contacting a team member directly today.
Not only does mindfulness benefit our minds, but it also benefits our bodies. Studies have shown that those who are more mindful in the workplace are less likely to suffer from burnout and related mental health issues. Instead, these individuals are more likely to foster more positive emotions, suffer from lower stress levels, have low blood pressure, improved sleep patterns, and much more.
Therefore, when you are under pressure, you are more equipped to deal with these unpleasant feelings instead of succumbing to them, making it easier for you to make decisions. Fortunately, there are many ways that you can practice mindfulness, even if it is just several times per week, from attending yoga classes, practising meditation, self-reflecting often, and much more.
When you work in an office-based job, keeping yourself active can be challenging, yet it is crucial that you find ways around this and get your body moving as much as possible throughout your workday. Studies have found that sitting at your desk for prolonged periods is as detrimental to your health as smoking since overexposure can cause harmful side effects or health conditions to develop, such as weak legs or glutes, weight gain, bad posture, risk of mental health conditions, cancer risk, and many more.
Therefore, it is crucial that you keep yourself moving or implement innovative ways of getting yourself up and out of your office chair – like a standing desk. You can do this by going for a walk during your lunch hour, playing a lunchtime game in the garden with your children (if you work remotely), or eating your lunch outside, which can help you stretch your legs and take a break from work if only just for half an hour.
When you’re in a leadership position, it can often feel like time is running out faster than you can complete tasks; due to this, you may have found yourself working overtime or continuing when you get back home. Occasionally is fine, yet if you find yourself working in your own time frequently, it might be time to set a boundary for when your day ends.
If you work from home and are fortunate enough to have your own office, lock the door behind you once you’ve finished so you aren’t tempted to resume work once you’ve finished. If you’re working from a company office, aim to close your laptop at a specific time, shut your to-do list and stationary, and prepare to leave the office so that you can resume the next day with a clear mind.