I’m struggling and I need your help. I used to love my job and my employer but
ever since a few months ago when takeover rumors started to circulate and the
company announced a new round of layoffs my attitude has changed. I used to
love getting up in the morning but now need like two alarm clocks to get me up.
And I also find myself making more and more excuses for not going to work.
What can I do to go back to how I used to feel? What should I do?
The Career Doctor responds:
Life is certainly changing for the typical U.S. worker. We’re working
longer hours than a generation ago forced to do more work because
of layoffs and hiring freezes and sometimes have to deal with rumors
of takeovers and downsizing hanging over us.
These issues — and more — are leading to more workers having increased
levels of job stress which can lead to job burnout.
Job stress is something we all face as workers — and we all handle it
differently. There is no getting around it. But not all stress is bad and
learning how to deal with and manage stress is critical to our maximizing
our job performance staying safe on the job and maintaining our physical
and mental health. For most workers infrequent doses of job stress pose
little threat and may be effective in increasing motivation and productivity
but too much — and too prolonged — can lead to a downward spiral — both
professionally and personally.
What should you do? See if you can make some changes; follow some of
my tips for managing the stress. Whatever you do make some changes
before you face job burnout which has serious psychological and physical
Some tips for managing job stress:
- Put it in perspective. Jobs are disposable. Your friends families and health
are not. If your employer expects too much of you and it’s starting to take its toll
on you start looking for a new job/new employer.
- Modify your job situation. If you really like your employer but the job has
become too stressful (or too boring) ask about tailoring your job to your skills.
And if you got promoted into a more stressful position that you just are not able
to handle ask about a lateral transfer – or even a transfer back to your old job
(if that’s what you want).
- Get time away. If you feel the stress building take a break. Walk away from
the situation perhaps walking around the block sitting on a park bench taking
in a little meditative time. Exercise does wonders for the psyche.
For many more tips on managing job stress read my article
Managing Job Stress:
10 Strategies for Coping and Thriving at Work published on Quintessential Careers.