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Burnout: Working less doesn’t help – but these 3 strategies do

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Constant warnings about the destruction of the planet, the outbreak of the Third World War, the decline of the (automotive) industry or deadly epidemics mean that a majority of Germans are afraid of the future and overwhelmed.

The result: Many fail even at the smallest of tasks. The frequency of the diagnosis of “burnout” has almost tripled in Germany in the last ten years, as data from the Federal Statistical Office show. The same trend can be seen in the US, where nearly 60 percent of employees in tech companies feel burned out, according to a survey.

Today, many only have the job of giving meaning

Jason Shen, author of the motivational blog “The Art of Ass Kicking”, TedX speaker and founder of three startups, explains in an article for the business magazine “Fast Company” that people can find a way out of burnout if they believe in a purpose win back.

“In the past, people found their purpose in life in family and religion,” writes Shen. But according to a survey of adolescents and young adults from 2018, only 22 percent said they were religious, and marriage and starting a family are also being postponed more and more in Germany and the USA. According to Shen, for many people, work is just a giver of meaning in their own lives. And that is a dangerous situation.

Meaning in private life even without a partner and children

Because while the belief in a professional goal can have a very inspiring effect, a professional setback is enough to make life seem pointless. Shen advises changing the focus.

Strategy 1: Regular social activities

One can find a deeper meaning in private life even without a partner or children. Good old friends or new acquaintances prove that you have value outside of your professional environment. It is best to organize regular social activities, such as dinner with friends, game nights or sports classes.

Strategy 2: helping others

For many, meaning is synonymous with the feeling of being needed or of making a contribution to a higher goal. If you miss this feeling at work, you can support friends or family members who are going through a difficult time.

Strategy 3: Support Organizations

Another way to make a positive contribution is to work in an organization whose goal is close to your heart. In the end, the following applies: Whether with friends, family, a club or an organization – there are many ways to remind yourself that you can make a difference and make the world a little better. And to find meaning in life – outside of work.

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