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Stress -- Question & Answer Listing  
Viewing 1-7 of 7 Knowledge Entries
Question / Answer

Question:
How does organizational burnout affect an organization?

Answer:
Organizational burnout refers to a complicated condition in the workplace that is most often caused by a conflict between an employee’s values, priorities and needs and those of the organization. This type of conflict naturally tends to have a negative impact on the effectiveness and credibility of the organization because individuals tend to feel resentful and apathetic about their job. They are often frustrated; feel powerless and isolated. As stress in the workplace goes up, productivity tends to go down.

Question:
Is there such a thing as "volunteer burnout" and if so, how do I recognize it my organization?

Answer:
Volunteer burnout is characterized by a volunteer’s persistent lack of enthusiasm and satisfaction with his/her volunteer position. Basically, the volunteer may be distracted, overwhelmed, lose perspective, appear dogmatic, cynical or intolerant, and/or lack interest in the organization. The symptoms of volunteer burnout are very similar to “personal burnout” or what paid employees experience when they feel overwhelmed with their responsibilities at work. If you seem to be having an unusually large turnover of volunteers (not to include those who leave an organization due to relocations), perhaps you have a volunteer burnout situation that needs to be addressed.

Question:
What are some of the physical and psychological indicators of stress?

Answer:
Stress is our body’s physical and/or emotional response to a continually changing environment. One definition for stress, given in The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition – 2000, is that it is “A mentally or emotionally disruptive or upsetting condition occurring in response to adverse external influences and capable of affecting physical health, usually characterized by increased heart rate, a rise in blood pressure, muscular tension, irritability, and depression.” Although the effects tend to be portrayed more as negative, stress can also influence positive reactions. For example, individuals dealing with certain changes in their lives may experience stress, but the stress may compel them into action. In terms of negative stress, it is important to acknowledge the symptoms if you see them in yourself or others and take actions to reduce or eliminate it. There are a number of books, classes, and other resources on stress management. Learn more about stress from the resources listed.

Question:
What are some of the signs and symptoms of stress?

Answer:
There are a number of physical, emotional, and mental signs that are symptomatic of someone who is stressed. Some physical signs of stress may be headaches, sweaty palms, shortness of breath, too much sleep or the inability to sleep, nausea and/or diarrhea, heart pounding, etc. Some emotional signs may be moodiness, irritability, abrasive, hostile, nervous, depressed, etc. Some mental signs may be forgetfulness, confusion, lack of concentration, lack of interest, negative behavior, etc. Note that this list is not conclusive, nor does necessarily indicate that individuals exhibiting some of these behaviors are stressed. However, if you are experiencing some of these symptoms, it might be wise to evaluate your lifestyle to see if there are ways to improve your quality of life. Army Family Team Building (AFTB) offers free Stress Management classes as part of their curriculum. Consult your local Military Treatment Facility (MTF) or other health provider for more information on stress management.

Question:
What are some techniques one can practice to avoid leader burnout?

Answer:
Leader burnout occurs when the leader of an organization feels overwhelmed, frustrated, emotionally and/or physically drained, and often becomes ineffective. There are a number of things a leader can do to avoid “leader burnout.” For example, no one person can “do it all.” Know your limits. Set priorities and learn to say “no.” Ask for, and accept, help. Delegate responsibilities to others, where appropriate. Manage your time efficiently and take care of yourself. Carve out some personal time to allow you to “recharge.” This might be to include an exercise class into your schedule, a personal development class, or perhaps even a massage. Effective leaders need to manage the stressors in their life in order to avoid leader burnout. Note that these are just a couple examples of what one can do to prevent leader burnout. Check out the references listed here for more information on effective leadership and stress management.

Question:
What are some ways to reduce or eliminate stress?

Answer:
One strategy for managing stress is to acknowledge it and determine the cause of your stress. Quite often the demands of one’s work, family, friends, etc. are so overwhelming that people forget to take care of themselves. Perhaps you need to manage your time more efficiently so you are not overwhelmed with activities. Perhaps changing your diet can alleviate some of the symptoms you are experiencing. Practicing relaxation techniques is a popular way to manage stress. Humor, positive thinking strategies, and spending more time with friends and family may help. There are a number of books and classes on stress management. Check with your health care provider as well, for information on this subject.

Question:
What can I do to alleviate stress?

Answer:
There is no single answer to how one can reduce stress. There are a number of stress reducing techniques from getting massage, taking a relaxing walk, to exercising or listening to music. Army Family Team Building (AFTB) offers free Stress Management classes as part of their curriculum. You can often find Stress Management related classes offered by your local Military Treatment Facility (MTF).
Viewing 1-7 of 7 Knowledge Entries

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