Okay, so the holidays are over. They might not have been as relaxing as you’d hoped but at least you managed to get some time to de-stress, kick back and enjoy life. And why not, you worked hard throughout the year.
And as you prepare to psyche yourself up for work in the New Year, no doubt you’ll remember these holidays with greater fondness than you felt at the time, the distant glow of time does that.
Back to the grindstone
A minority of people might get excited at the prospect of getting back to work, and all that it entails but most don’t. For the majority it’s yet another year of being asked to do more, taking up the slack left by exited team-mates and feeling even less able to say ‘no’ to excessive requests from your manager.
When the pressure at work starts to bite again, which it can within days of returning, it feels like you haven’t had a break at all.
So what’s the cause of this pressure?
A recent Absence Management Survey* reported that growing workload and 24/7 access to technology was causing staff to feel increasingly unable to switch off. At a time when staff are feeling less secure in their jobs following the recession, this is still a time when they feel too vulnerable to raise concerns with their managers.
And what’s to be done about it?
Statistics tell us that stress-related illness and mental ill-health have been on the rise for the last 6 years. The cost is a heavy one both in terms of lost output and human suffering. So what can be done about it?
On a personal level, individuals need to learn how best to protect themselves from stress and eventual burnout. But there is also a burning need for organisations to create a culture where staff can talk openly about the pressure they feel without fear of recrimination. Boundaries are important for mental well-being and greater productivity and it the role of organisations to train up their managers so they have the skill-set to be able to support the staff they manage.
Over to you
What do you do to switch out of work mode? How do you stop your brain from being dragged back to constant over-drive?
If you want to know how I could help you create boundaries in your workplace for greater productivity and increased well-being, get my FREE eBook 7 Guaranteed Ways to Reduce Stress, Stop feeling Overwhelmed at Work and Get Your Life Back.
* CIPD’s 2015 Absence Management Survey