Workplace burnout is now an official illness

The WHO defines burnout as chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed.

Fred Bodimer
June 03, 2019 - 2:16 am
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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) — Workplace burnout is now an official medical diagnosis -- according to the World Health Organization.   The W-H-O defines burnout as chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed.

"We are seeing people in any career that are reaching levels of about fifty percent of the population becoming burned out," said Dr. Jennifer Wessels, a family medicine physician and VP of Medical Affairs for SSM Health.  "When we are talking about burnout, it is more than just somebody who has had a bad day at work or someone who's frustrated after a tough week."
 
So what are the symptoms of workplace burnout?

"One would be true emotional exhaustion," Dr. Wessels tells KMOX.  "It means not that you just had one bad day or one bad week, but chronically you feel like you cannot rebound.  You may take a vacation or a long weekend and coming back to work you don't feel any better, you don't feel rejuvinated.  The second condition is cynicism.  You feel distant from your co-workers.  If you're a medical professional, you may feel distant from your patients.  And that cynicism is really pervasive.  The third main factor is really feeling a loss of efficacy at work, feeling like I can't make a difference, feeling like nothing that I'm doing actually matters."
 
Dr. Wessels says there are several things you can do to try to avoid workplace burnout.

"If you feel like you may be burned out, you can talk to your physician, you can talk to a counselor, or a mental health professional," said Dr. Wessels.  "You can do things personally to help mitigate burnout like making sure you take time off from work and are able to disconnect or disengage from your email.  Spend time with your family and friends, get enough sleep and exercise.  Eat healthy.  And then at your workplace, you may want to talk with your boss or co-workers about what can be done to make your job less frustrating, more efficacious, making sure that have a better work/life balance that fits your individual needs."
 
Burnout will become world-recognized by the year 2022.