Despite the many negative characteristics that are often used to stereotype the millennial generation, statistics continue to indicate that millennials may be the complete opposite. In fact, we’re actually working harder than any previous generation. Millennials in Canada and the United States are working a minimum of 42 hours a week.
There’s just one problem – they’re burning out…and fast.
From juggling multiple side hustles, working long hours to even just the pressure of achieving “success”, a Happify study conducted by the Harvard Business Review has found that “people in their twenties and early thirties are in a relatively negative state of mind.” They are experiencing ongoing stress from an unhealthy obsession with their jobs.
Are you currently feeling burnout from work? Here are 5 tips on how to effectively bounce back (and hopefully prevent yourself from experiencing it again!):
Determine the exact cause
So, you know that work is making you extremely stressed but what exactly is it about work that is causing these feelings? Do you have an unbearable workload? Is your commute tiring you out? Are you having issues getting along with your colleagues? Do you feel like you’ve hit a dead end in your current role? Take the time to pinpoint the direct cause of your stress so you can develop a direct solution. This may mean setting up some time to chat with your manager, figuring out a new route to work or finding a carpool buddy or perhaps, beginning to search for something new. According to the Staples Business Advantage 2016 Workplace Index, 41% of Millennials say burnout is motivating them to look for a new job.
Make a list
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by everything you need to complete, making a list is a good place to start. Write down every single task and then assign a priority level to each one. Almost instantly, you should feel even a sliver of relief as everything is out of your head and down on paper. You can even take it a step further by separating your list into various sections such as work, home and any other responsibilities you may have. Tools like Wunderlist and Evernote are helpful for list-making.
Hydration is always important but when you’re working long hours and pushing your body’s limits, drinking water needs to become a top priority. Get yourself a nice water bottle and keep it with you at your desk so you remember to hydrate throughout the day. If this is out of the norm for you, establish the habit by adding “Drink water!” to your to-do list for 21 days. It may sound a little silly but it takes 21 days (3 weeks) to build a habit and after that time, you’ll become a natural!
Did you know that more than half of millennials have laid awake at night from stress? Don’t feel pressure to dive in head first as you’ll start to feel overwhelmed very quickly. Work on the small, easy things that you can get out of the way and then slowly progress towards your bigger projects. But, remember – you won’t be productive (and you’re likely to experience burnout again) if you’re lacking sleep. Know when to call it a night and pick back up in the morning.
Find your source of relaxation
What’s your favourite way to relax? Maybe it’s curling up with a good book, going for a long walk or binge watching your favourite show on Netflix. After a long day, even 30 minutes of your favourite activity can completely relax you. Sure, working hard and getting things done is important but your mental health is even more important. Schedule time in your calendar each week for “me” time!
By: Chanèle McFarlane, Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Do Well Dress Well