Today, thanks to the internet, many people can work from different locations. More and more companies are allowing their employees to be remote workers. These employees are not tied to desks of the same old office regularly. They can work from anywhere until they have an internet connection.
But just because you can work remotely doesn’t mean you can’t suffer burns. It may happen to anybody, no matter what job they do and where they work.
What causes BurnOut?
Does your life sometimes feel like cliché merchandise? You know this one. An exhausted man sitting at the table with his fingers covering his nose as the pressure of pain had built up there Or maybe you feel like a woman sitting in front of several disembodied arms, each asking something about her. Perhaps you hit a wall, and your current state of mind is the woman asleep in the copier.
The problem is how mental health problems such as depression and anxiety are not clearly defined. We don’t have a clear medical definition of fatigue and burn out, so you can’t be diagnosed with exhaustion. As a result, we don’t have a precise treatment for it.
However, the symptoms of burn out are similar to those of depression, anxiety, and stress. So here we are in entirely unexplored water.
Before we discuss these symptoms, we want to point out that although fatigue is often associated with work, it is certainly not the only cause. Fatigue can be caused by anything in your life that is making you feel stressed and tired.
Morale and Mental Health Challenges
In dispersed teams, it is much more difficult for managers to boost informal moral and mental health. You can’t handle walking around; You don’t see who stays up late or leaves early, who eats alone at their table, or who looks very withdrawn or depressed.
The nature of remote work can also contribute to an environment where moral and mental health develops more quickly and goes unnoticed.
Loneliness, which is also associated with social isolation, predicts depression and is a symptom of depression. Loneliness and depression cause people to withdraw and often cannot take steps to help them recover or manage. Loneliness also decreases a person’s ability to recognize social cues, which further isolates him. This emotional separation, in turn, is strongly associated with clinical anxiety and depression. Anxiety and depression can change the way people see themselves and the world around them. A person suffering from anxiety or depression is more likely to interpret interactions as unfavorable.
Christina Maslach, a social psychologist at UC Berkeley, found that fatigue results from a systemic combination of exhaustion, cynicism, and professional or organizational inefficiency leading to feelings of inefficiency and poor performance.
These factors make someone a pressure cooker for moral and mental health problems and, if left untreated or treated, can lead to burns. Conversely, fatigue can accelerate these factors. Emphasizing mental health’s importance by creating an open and safe environment is an essential first step for remote team managers. Managers can increase their opportunities to speak openly and respectfully about mental health by doing the following:
Model: Managers can talk about their mental health support activities and add their therapist appointments to the public work calendar.
Share strategy: Help discuss specific techniques for treating anxiety or depression in a particular location, e.g., B. in a group chat channel dedicated to mental health.
Avoidability conditions: Don’t use terms like “crazy” or “crazy” as adjectives or jokes.
Provision of partner groups for inclusion: Weak lines or email chains shared by everyone in the company who is jogging, meditating, or hosting a meal can help promote healthy habits even when people are not physically together.
Support for mental health holidays: Allow personal days as a form of sick leave. It’s an excellent idea to make sure you understand the psychological benefits your business has to offer. If none or minimal, you can speak to HR or even the CEO to expand the offering.
Open and private discussion: Encourage mental health discussions, both individually and in public forums and seminars. It helps in building and maintaining psychological safety in the team, which is not only about dealing with work-related task-related issues but also mental health and how to seek help.
With that said, let’s look at the things a remote team would need to counter burn out successfully.
How Can Remote Employees Counter Burnout?
When sharing your experiences, you must never reveal the experiences of others. If you have confidence in such disclosures, it is good practice to thank direct reports for your act of belief and maintain that belief.
Similarly, you want to be sensitive about reporting your concerns to direct reports and make sure you don’t avoid sharing uselessly. Attempts to gain sympathy, to deepen relationships artificially, or to share severe pain are trademarks. Vulnerability researcher Brenne Brown calls for highlights that use vulnerability as manipulation or attention.
The general culture of empathy, trust, and inclusion act as an antidote to the loneliness remote workers can experience. So investing in this cultural aspect also benefits mental health. In particular, empathy and compassion were getting associated with greater overall emotional resilience at work.
Remote workers are especially at risk when exhausted, isolated, and struggle with communication structures optimized for personal teams. Remote workers are more likely to be left worthless because of tacit pressure to “prove” their contribution. Your manager and co-workers are unlikely to wonder if you are working while you are physically there in the office. But when people are working remotely, the managers and other people on the leadership role may feel that you’re not fully productive.
Avoiding burnout is not the sole responsibility of the employee. Burnout is a systemic problem mainly caused by corporate culture and stress factors in the work environment. Having an exemplary leadership and maintaining a set of related values and practices can help prevent workforce burnout.