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Data Science and the Method for Avoiding Burnout

Ludovic Biyong writes about the importance of maintaining mental health in the tech sphere.

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All careers come with their unique stresses. In a world moving a mile a minute, many people run into the stresses and concerns of modern-day living no matter their industry or title. But one career path in particular – though very rewarding – that can easily yield to burnout is data science. 

The digital explosion of the modern age happened seemingly overnight for a lot of people. Still, for those involved in tech, data science, and virtually anything that requires coding, the process certainly didn’t happen overnight. Data science, deep code predictions, and Artificial Intelligence are intensive disciplines, and the amount of attention and attention to detail it takes to accurately code complex systems is no easy feat. While a wonderful skill to hone and possess, this career can no doubt lead to burnout.

But in a world where tech-heads are so important to so many industries, what can we – or, you, as a data scientist – do to help prevent yourself from experiencing burnout?

  1. Stay Calm and Handle It

Often, burnout will happen because of a result of stress. We have too much to do – over a consistent period – and this results in stress. However, the painful catch 22 in this situation is that stress can sometimes lead to anxiety, which can lead to a crippling form of stress. And while the ultimate cause for this form of burnout may not ultimately lie in one’s performance, a good way to help mitigate this in the time in between is by focusing on the tasks at hand – one at a time – and going down the day’s checklist. It’s helpful to live by the following motto of do, delegate, drop. What do you have to do today? Put that first and knock it off the list. What can you delegate? Ask your team for help. What can you drop until later? Push that to another day.


2. Take a Break

The bottom line is, many people are often overworked. In the field of data science, it’s not unusual for many to take their work home with them and code into the late AM. And while some things are necessary every so often, for most people, this simply isn’t conducive to longevity. IT’s not realistic. And in severe cases, it’s not healthy. If you find yourself in this situation, remember to take a vacation — and don’t feel bad about it! For many, taking a “staycation” has really helped them to recuperate and revive their restless and downtrodden spirit.

Next time you feel like burnout may be on the horizon, remember to implement the above steps. More importantly, though, prevention is better than the best remedy, so be sure to implement measures to avoid burnout throughout your month to month.

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