A new book explains the root causes of burnout and why we won’t solve them without changing work culture.
Job burnout is on the rise, according to several surveys. People are feeling emotionally exhausted, detached from their work and colleagues, and less productive and efficacious. This makes them more likely to suffer health consequences, need sick days, and quit their jobs.
Not too surprisingly, burnout has become even more prevalent during the pandemic, particularly among health care professionals, causing widespread concern. But, while many employers recognize the problem, they often don’t recognize the solutions, says journalist Jennifer Moss, author of the new book The Burnout Epidemic: The Rise of Chronic Stress and How We Can Fix It. She argues that employers need to stop blaming employees for not being resilient enough and, instead, change the policies and workplaces cultures that breed burnout in the first place.
“If you want to address the burnout problem, the first step is repeating and internalizing this mantra: Burnout is about your organization, not your people,” she writes. “Yoga, vacation time, wellness tech, and meditation apps can help people feel optimized, healthier. But when it comes to preventing burnout, suggesting that these tools are the cure is dangerous.”
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