I’ve been helping to deliver some workshop content to a team on how to identify potential burn-out, assess how good your energy levels are, and plan to optimise them for productive work, but also for a good work-life balance. I discovered there is a word in Japanese “Karōshi” which means to die from overwork, surely a sign of how bad burn-out can become!
Being aware of your own mental and physical state, and spotting early signs of burn-out is key. There are lots of things people can do to address an energy deficit, but of course most of us are constrained in some way by the demands of our work. We can only change what we control, but everybody is able to improve their energy in some way.
The quick fixes of coffee, sugar, alcohol, TV and social media don’t really help. Getting more sleep, taking up a hobby, going for a walk, or stopping for a proper lunch break all make a difference, but what works for you will vary.
Companies that think about this issue and help their staff manage it will get more productivity, more creativity and greater engagement from their staff, so it’s a win-win.