Burnout Syndrome: The Price of Helping Others
People who suffer from Burnout or also known as "being burned", are described in the literature that despite having been idealistic, optimistic, and dedicated to their work, with high motivation and work commitment, many times due to excessive demands or work requirements leads to a chronic but deficient effort that ends up with results not convenient for the programmed goals.
Burnout Syndrome was first described by the psychoanalyst Herbert J. Freudenberger in 1973, and refers to the response to prolonged stress due to work that exceeds your ability to manage it.
The capacity of the person is integrated by different factors such as genetics, development, education, training, and culture among others. The preparation and updating in their specialty is constant and does not end, and they must build defense mechanisms to avoid joining the Burnout team because of the pressure that their work can generate.
Addressing the issue of Burnout has the purpose of learning how to handle situations for all workers and avoid behaviors that increase work stress. A stimulus produces a response and responsiveness is what protects the person from falling into stress.
There are several prevention strategies to avoid or limit Burnout, but it is important to identify the factors that facilitate and trigger it, such as the work environment, the tasks or duties of those involved, and the organization of the workplace. There are predictable variables that can and should be changed in advance, as well as recommendations in the institutional and individual settings to prevent and manage the syndrome.
The institutions and the personnel that make up the Burnout interact, but each one has interference with different approaches to the condition of the Burnout, so below are some of the recommendations that can be found in the research publications on the subject.
Recommendations to prevent Burnout Syndrome
Caring is an investment, not an expense.
Internal communication is very important, so we must be open to communicate the weaknesses and achievements with truthfulness, this maintains the confidence and the direction of the objective.
Changes in procedures can be faced and solved more easily when work teams understand them.
Indicate with punctuality the guidelines of the work functions to be carried out and the levels of responsibility, it contributes to avoiding ambiguity of those functions and the eventual overload of work.
Find out the lines of responsibility. Well-organized management and strong leadership are important factors that allow staff at all levels to discuss issues and concerns with team or service leaders.
Space and workplace conditions are of great importance.
A well ventilated and illuminated place, as well as, furniture, material, and equipment adapted to the functions that are carried out, determine a good development of the activity.
Planning implies fulfilling in time and form the activities inherent to the position.
Not only is adequate remuneration for work performance important, but verbal recognition is also a positive stimulus necessary to maintain self-esteem, keep staff motivated, productive, satisfied, and proud.
Schedule rotations in high specialty services, critical areas facing greater emotional wear.
Allocate the necessary and adequate resources so that they do not resolve by improvising, which later leads to dissatisfaction, discomfort, and delay in the objectives.
Create possible goals to achieve and seek expectations of personal, group, and professional growth.
It is undeniable that the staff recognizes the need to update and continually request training and cutting-edge information in all areas and levels.
Continuous education favors labor, intellectual, and personal growth.
Choose your job well
The best possible prevention to avoid suffering Burnout Syndrome is as simple as having a realistic picture of yourself and knowing what is expected from the job you are applying for.
Healthy living, healthy work
Work is a part of our life and the habits we develop in it will affect our performance and personal satisfaction. Staying healthy can help you achieve personal well-being.
Improve your workspace
If it is not possible to change your physical space, the order and comfort it can provide will make you feel more comfortable in a welcoming environment.
Peer-relieved Burnout Syndrome
When a true partnership exists it is very difficult to develop the syndrome, our work environment and expectations will reduce the negative impact of work by sharing it.
Don't get "burned out" by being perfect
If you keep a very high level of demand on yourself, you accelerate the speed at which you burn out from work and develop burnout. Being a perfectionist is a quality that when you finish your goal at work, the satisfaction is so rewarding that it drives you to continue in that line. The only value the spaces to recover energy and think, be prudent in the responsibility of your activities, as well as, balance the time and the task to obtain the optimal result.
Activities to combat Burnout Syndrome
Occupations opposed to our work counteract the tiredness and frustration of our responsible activity.
Playing a sport allows us to release tension and keeps us in shape so that we are able to work at a faster pace, but without the feeling of overload.
By having inactive time during the journey to work, it could be used by listening to music or doing relaxation breathing exercises.
Enjoy a vacation and not just in a hospital, the place and time is up to you.
Another hobby is reading a good novel or other topics.
Get together with your friends.
Enjoy your family and hug them.
Burnout syndrome involves many aspects of our daily work and has repercussions when we acquire it in all our other activities, in relation to our collaborators, and consequently with family life. To reach the balance in order not to be affected requires to be alert, to change or modify opportunely what is within our reach, or to request what corresponds to the institution or company in which we carry out our activities.
Every day changes are made and we are in a growing activity, with new challenges, new objectives, but always with a line of service. At the end of each day, we will not only have the feeling of being free with ourselves, but also the feeling of having fulfilled and done well.
"Productivity is never an accident, it is always a result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and concentrated effort" - Paul J. Meyer
Extra tips to fight Burnout
Be punctual and responsible
Be respectful and tolerant
Be clear and truthful in the way you communicate.
Be disciplined in the way you work
Be empathetic and forward-looking
Be efficient in managing time and resources
Be an example of teamwork
Be committed to work, colleagues, and clients
Be honest and fair in your actions
We are part of the prestige of the work.
It is up to us to make sure that the colleagues and clients with whom we have communication and require information on the location of services leave grateful for the attention to human quality. I am proud to be a part of this and I demonstrate this every day by fulfilling the responsibilities assigned to me.