Hacking employment, improving work, professional development
Posts: 1139
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:14 pm
Location: Falls City, OR

Re: Burnout

Post by enigmaT120 »

Sometimes I refer to it as "doing time" which is obviously insensitive to people who are actually incarcerated.

Posts: 2675
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: Burnout

Post by IlliniDave »

I'm no stranger to long hours and certain types of stresses at work. I think I've escaped true burnout by being able to reframe things throughout the 17 or so years I had my previous "job" (when I return in January I'll be on a new assignment with the same employer, something I find a little stressful). By "reframing" I mean allowing my relationship with my job/its role in my life to evolve as necessary.

First and foremost, I don't identify strongly with my profession, i.e., I don't walk around thinking of myself as an "engineer" or a Principal this-or-that with XYZ Megacorp. When I was younger my job was my means of providing for my family, and I kept that in the front of my mind. Now my job is my source of financial resources for ER. Along the way I've made a conscious effort to keep my eye on the prize. I've learned not to take work personally and to stop being judgmental about the tasks I perform and the people I interact with. Some days I'm lending a hand doing entry-level grunt work, at other times I'm spending weeks at a time in meetings with customers and upper management. Some of my coworkers are a joy to be around, others are extremely difficult. I just make an effort to forget about what happened yesterday, try not to fret about tomorrow, and make my best effort on whatever I'm doing "right now". I didn't always have that outlook, and for me the accumulation of negative thoughts/feelings was the source of burnout. At some point I began to learn that, at least in my case, collecting up all the negativity and carrying it around with me was a voluntary action on my part. So I stopped.

Maybe it's a cop out, but I've adopted the attitude that if work was supposed to be fun they wouldn't pay me so much to do it, and instead would require I purchase a ticket to get in the door every morning. Typically money flows in the opposite direction of (perceived) happiness. My job at work, the essential transaction, is for me to make my employer happy. Should I derive enjoyment from the job itself, it would be a nice perk. As it is, that is uncommon.

Posts: 491
Joined: Sat Jun 08, 2013 6:26 pm
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: Burnout

Post by BlueNote »

I did sort of the opposite thing and just accepted a lower average salary for more work life balance.

I could work 60+ hours a week and make more (not close to 150K though Holy Moly ;) ). It's nice because I go to work and work very hard but when I go home I don't do any work at all almost ever. I don't have a work cell phone or anything either. I am very effective and efficient at work because of this. I see other people voluntarily working long hours so they can get ahead and I just don't care for that. I work with people who are always working, at home, on the subway, on the elevator etc. I just force myself to be as effective as possible and I've learned how to work the system. If my employer tries to load me up with too much work I tell them it's too much and suggest alternatives to achieve the same desired result (allocate other resources, automate, extend deadlines etc.)

When I got my accounting designation I was working a full time job plus an extra 20 hours or so a week on the accounting designation. I know what it's like and after it was all done I was almost ready to quit finance and go into some other field like computer programming (my first love). I could program all day long if I was working on a personal project, which I often get to do at my current job because I make time for myself to do that kind of thing.

Another bonus in my situation is that my employer recognizes that I could rapidly find another job and are therefore generous with non-financial stuff. I could probably accept a more junior role somewhere else and make the same salary I do now in a more senior role. I didn't realize how important the work life balance was until I experienced a few years of imbalance.

Hopefully the 2 years of huge savings works out without messing you up, I guess having that FIRE exit at the end would help get you through it.

Posts: 32
Joined: Sun Oct 19, 2014 6:20 pm

Re: Burnout

Post by OrganicRain »

There is no doubt I am suffering from burnout. I worked straight commission for 10 years - number one sales rep in the country out of 400 reps for 8 of those years. Made lots of money - got tired. Went into sales management and led a team to be the best in the nation. I finally got laid off July2015. Within a couple of months of "time on my hands" everything hit me. I was then offered the same type of role with a competitor and lasted only 6 weeks. Walked out of the place a zombie. Now recovering. Fortunately I am close to, if not, FI.

Someone mentioned that highly effective and driven people are at risk of burnout, well, I am an example.

Posts: 1139
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:14 pm
Location: Falls City, OR

Re: Burnout

Post by enigmaT120 »

scriptbunny wrote:
Thu Jul 06, 2017 6:38 pm
Re-upping this thread. Any advice for a temporary salve to jacob's type-2 burnout? I figure I need about 6 weeks of mental energy to finish a project and find another job.
I'm sorry, but all I can say is that I need to get out of this as soon as I can. If I quit, no pension for over two years. If they fire me, immediate pension, but I can't make myself operate at a level that bad. I hope and pray for an "early out" situation which will let me retire before I'm 56. I can't think of a temporary salve, maybe my 3 week trip to Costa Rica will be one. I hope not, as I don't want a salve, but a solution.

Site Admin
Posts: 11649
Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:38 pm
Location: USA, Zone 5b, Koppen Dfa, Elev. 620ft, Walkscore 73

Re: Burnout

Post by jacob »

https://www.theguardian.com/society/201 ... s-epidemic
Article wrote: [Five signs...]
  • You feel exhausted, with no energy to do anything. You might experience disturbed sleep, and some flu-like symptoms.
  • You have difficulties concentrating, and feel as if your mind is zoning out, going into a daze for hours on end.
  • You feel irritated and frustrated, often becoming self-critical.
  • Supermarkets and similar places begin to feel overwhelming – the lights are too bright and there is too much noise.
  • You feel detached from things you used to love.

Posts: 56
Joined: Sun Sep 02, 2018 11:57 am

Re: Burnout

Post by AnalyticalEngine »

Pulling up this thread from a few years back because this is extremely timely for me. I've been dealing with Jacob's type 2 burnout for nearly two years now, and it's getting to the point of no return. I even thought I was going through Major Depressive Disorder for awhile, except all my problems completely vanish when I can get completely away from work for at least a week.

The problem I'm having is I'm both only 4 years into my career, but only 5 years away from ERE. Burnout is impacting my ability to find my way out of this because it doesn't even feel like I'm passionate about anything any more. Every job in my field feels like it'd be the same tedious bullshit.

Does anyone have any advice for coping with type 2 burnout so I feel like I can at least enjoy life outside of work again?

Posts: 548
Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:15 am

Re: Burnout

Post by Jin+Guice »

I'll again make an argument for real happiness now over imagined happiness later. There is no person in this thread I would not advise to quit their job. If this were a forum for drug addicts I would never make an argument, but there is such a thing as too much delayed gratification. Most us are seeking a to save 35x annual expenses which translates into a high six figure or low seven figure net worth. It's easy to forget, THIS IS NOT A REQUIREMENT FOR A GOOD LIFE.

User avatar
Posts: 610
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2014 5:28 am

Re: Burnout

Post by Bankai »

If you're 4/9 years into accumulation, I assume you already have a pretty sizeable stash of 5-10 years of expenses. Why not take some time off and recharge? You can take 6 months or a year, decompress and think if you want to go back to your old career or start a new path. Staying in a job that makes you miserable for another 5 years doesn't sound good and these things tend to get worse, not better, with time. As many people here concluded, it's better to start fixing your life now and not wait years until at some point in future money will solve all your problems. If a job is your limiting factor, start with changing this part of your life. It's better to be happy now and reach ERE/FI as a byproduct than to make it an ultimate goal and go through hell to reach it.

George the original one
Posts: 4878
Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:28 am
Location: Wettest corner of Orygun

Re: Burnout

Post by George the original one »

You have a need/desire to continue accumulation. The current job has you burnt out. This is a recipe for job-hopping! Ideally with a short break in-between jobs to recharge your batteries.

Yes, the new job will likely mean BTDT, but at least it will be a new environment. On the bonus side, job-hopping usually entails a pay raise.

Posts: 1190
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2016 6:05 am

Re: Burnout

Post by classical_Liberal »

Adding to the above, another benefit of taking a "sabbatical" is that if the problems a person is experiencing doesn't disappear with the job, clearly there are other issues. Sometimes that realization is worth a years worth of expenses in itself.

Post Reply