Fast Company #4 : LUSENET : M.Ed./International Falls : One Thread

Kevin Erickson Fast Company #4 5-14-00

Fifteen Ways to Avoid Burnout

This article was about fifteen different people who had jobs ranging from doctors to business occupations. Each person had different views on ways to avoid burnout in their area of employment. Some of the ideas were similar while others voiced opinions quite different. The people in the article said that one needs to become involved with hobbies or other activities to take the mind off ones job. Reading the bible, limiting your days and hours, making a schedule, and finding time to spend with your family were a few of the ideas given by the people who were interviewed on the topic of burnout in their area of employment. Most of the time the people could tell when they needed to take a break from their jobs; their jobs were running their lives and increasing the stress in their everyday living. When employees take time away from their occupation they tend to come back refreshed and seem to be more effective in their job area. Most of the employees interviewed talked about making a schedule and trying to stick with it. Make a plan of when you are going to take days off and when you are going to spend time doing things that are important to you other than working. Education is one area of employment in which the burnout or turnover rate is extemely high. An educator must not only deal with academics but in todays classrooms the students bring in their troubles and worries from home and the teacher must help these children or youth. Not only is teaching a high stress job to many, it is also a low paying job and many who start in education may switch occupations not only due to stress but also money. As an educator and having taught for five years, I now understand why teaching can have such a high turnover rate. There are those days when I feel like I want to get out but thank goodness there are more good days than bad. With teaching there is so much planning and organizing that I find myself unable to leave my work at work. Even during the summer months I am planning out my year or creating lessons and find myself in the classroom organizing. This could be one reason why their is burnout in education. Another factor in teacher burnout, as I stated above, is the students coming into the classroom. Todays classroom is diverse in terms of background, home environments, ethnic origin, and learning disabilities. A teacher must know how to handle students coming from any of the above groups if they are to teach effectively and equally to every student. Students bring their problems or struggles with them to school and what they are experiencing at home affects the way they learn and treat classmates; this can create problems. Although there is a high turnover rate among teachers, there are also many educators who have been teaching for many years and love their jobs. Just as with the people interviewed in the article, educators need to find some hobbie or activity to participate in that will ease their stress and take their minds off of teaching. Educators must be able to set aside their work to pursue their own personal interests as well as spending time with their own family. Talking to other educators and listening to their opinions on subjects or difficulties may also help with a problem or ease stress. Every person in the work force needs to reevaluate themselves when feeling stressed or fed up with a job. The good points and the bad must be reviewed and a list of ideas on how to change or what can be done to improve the bad points must be made. To avoid burnout in any job a person must also enjoy his/her work and get along with the people he/she works with.

-- Anonymous, May 15, 2000

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