April 27, 2021 By Cheryl Viola, Executive Director, MBA
Work fatigue, we have all had it from time to time. When you question why you are doing or working in your current position, you need to pause and reflect on that moment when you were being interviewed, when you were convincing the interviewer or the panel why they should pick you. You were mentally raising your hand saying “Pick me”. When you are applying for a job or seeking a promotion you are essentially raising your hand saying “Pick me”.
Sometimes work fatigue comes because we feel that our growth opportunities have stopped. You could be struggling with personalities, that of co-workers or leadership. When you are feeling work fatigue, you need to remind yourself why you wanted to be picked for the job in the first place.
Steps to overcome work-fatigue
Engage your Brain
Raise your hand to volunteer for committees, professional development programs at work or take a course on your own.
Find meaning in your work
Think about why you got into your field of work originally, are you still on the same path? Renew your commitment to the goals you had or make new ones. Setting new career goals within your current role can give you a renewed sense of purpose.
When I worked at the Institute of Technology, I started as a desktop publisher doing the layouts for the students’ workbooks. After I was promoted to a supervisor role and took on training and other responsibilities, I was promoted again in a horizontal move that took me away from what I enjoyed doing. I was frustrated and felt like the promotion was a demotion. After talking with the dean and expressing my feelings I was told that the horizontal move, in a way for a short time was underutilizing my skills and that soon the institute would have the systems and software in place that the horizontal move would add to my skills and provide me with more growth. I learned that at times we have to be patient to find meaning in the work we are doing, when we stick through it, the opportunities come.
Help others advance
Servant–based leadership means that you get joy and satisfaction in seeing others grow. Ask if there is a team member or employee on a different team that you can mentor.
Ask for More
When you first started your job, you were enthusiastic and often sought out extra things to do. Go back to the Pick me mentality. Seek the opportunities to do more. Ask to help out on other projects.
When I worked in Banking. I found many days where the foot traffic was slow, I was bored. I searched for things to do. By nature, I am a self-starter and I wrote a teller manual that included step-by-step procedures on transactions, money exchanges, cd deposits. Etc. Never be afraid to ask for more.
Be open to change
Humans are creatures of habit. We get accustomed to the way things are done. We need to pause, reflect and be open to change. If you have been curious or interested in another role within your organization talk to your leadership and see you can try a new role.
I have a background in post-secondary education database troubleshooting. When I was first approached about working for a chamber, I was scared and insecure. I thought for sure someone else would be more qualified than I was. I took a chance, changed jobs, and learned some new skills as well as dusted off some old skills I had not used. Then the opportunity came when the current executive director was leaving. I loved serving the members and the community decided to apply for the Executive Director position.
There are growth opportunities within your organizations but often you have to be the one to approach your administration to let them know you are interested. It is good to stop and remember why you wanted the job you’re in. Find ways to say “Pick me!”