update: I think I’m burning out — what should I do?

Remember the letter-writer who was burning out from a high-stress work situation that was making her exhausted and grumpy to the point that she was having trouble thinking clearly? Here’s the update.

The short update is that a lot of things are better (and I’m no longer making jokes about running away to Tahiti), but I’m still not out of the woods yet.

I took your advice and talked to my boss. I thought he knew what was going on with me, but apparently he thought all the mental health days I’d been taking were for conventional medical problems and not stress. We both headdesked repeatedly. He quickly took a couple of projects off my work list, I wrapped up the big project we had going, and I took a week off.

I also went to see my doctor, who suggested that we increase the dosage of my antidepressant. Oh. Yeah, that helped a lot. It’s amazing how depression can sneak up on people and give them tunnel vision, even when they’ve been through it before. Getting the depression symptoms out of the way revealed a bunch of anxiety symptoms, so I’m currently working on that with professional help.

We’ve hired someone to split my responsibilities with. It’s going to be a couple more months before he’s up to speed and I don’t feel 100% responsible for dealing with all emergencies, but it’s already progress.

I’m still taking mental health days more often than I’d like – at least one every couple weeks, and usually more than that. My boss is concerned that it’s taking this long to find a sustainable workload for me, and so am I. I think I have a lot to learn about how to handle an inbox full of people asking me to do things that aren’t necessarily my core job responsibilities, and how to handle my own anxiety about… well, about just about everything, right now.

In the long term, I’m looking at other career options. As much as I like my current employer, I may do better in a larger organization where I’d have a limited set of responsibilities instead of being the go-to person for everything. Or I may need a different field of work all together.

Thanks for the perspective and the advice. It did a lot to help me get unstuck.

{ 58 comments… read them below or add one }

  1. Jerzy

    OP – I’m glad you’re working on handling your depression and anxiety. As a fellow-sufferer, I know what a toll that can take on your productivity.

    Honestly, reading this made me think about all the ways in which I am not dealing with my daily work stresses, and really ignoring many depression/anxiety symptoms.

    Best of luck to you, OP! Have a great New Years!

    Reply
    1. AnonyMoose

      Me too. I actually have my psych appt in 30 minutes and I think I’m going to up my AD too.

      Thanks OP for the push I needed. I hear you about anxiety! My depression is mostly covered but the panic attacks still haven’t stopped – even though I love what I do. It’s enough to drive us crazy, isn’t it? GOOD LUCK with whatever you end up doing! :)

      Reply
  2. Ad Girl

    OP – glad to hear things are going better!

    Speaking from experience of being in a similar position with too large of a workload/lots of stress at a company with only 15 employees, I’ve done a lot better being at a larger (70-80 employees) organization now with a more limited set of responsibilities.

    Reply
    1. M-C

      It seems like it’d help to be in a larger organization. But if the fundamental problem is the OP not being able to say no, or not being able to prioritize tasks well enough, or not being able to communicate well enough about the workload, the same path to burnout can easily be achieved elsewhere. It sounds like the OP’s manager is very supportive, much more than you’d be likely to find at some other random spot. So maybe it’d be worth trying to work on the fundamental problems while staying in place? Let me simply suggest that drugs may feel good, but they don’t substitute for some good talking therapy..

      Reply
  3. Bend & Snap

    Hugs OP!

    I was JUST diagnosed with anxiety and situational depression, and the anti-anxiety meds have improved my quality of life so much! I hope that improves for you soon.

    Reply
    1. AnonyMoose

      Do you mind if I ask what you’re taking? (Sorry Alison for the tangent) My doc keeps saying Buspirone is awesome….and it is not.

      Reply
      1. Anna the Accounting Student

        I think that’s true for just about any drug — it works great for some people, but less so for others.

        Reply
      2. Programmer 01

        No antidepressant or anti-anxiety med is one-size-fits-all — it’s why there are warnings all over the place to tell your doctor if you are feeling the same or worse while on it. Of course, your doctor is supposed to LISTEN to that and change things, argh. Brains are complicated things!

        I do great on clonazepam, to the point where just having it on my person is enough to stave off anxiety attacks (because I have no anxiety about having anxiety anymore), but my sister absolutely cannot take it and it makes things much worse (she takes something from a similar family with no side-effects, though, I think lorazepam? It’s another benzo).

        I’ve taken a lot (a LOT — 20 years worth) of antidepressants and antipsychotics and mood levelers and off-label-use drugs and I still have extremely memorable reactions to some — some positive, but whoa some are super negative. I’ve never, ever had a doctor tell me to keep taking them if I had really negative side-effects, but to stop immediately. I’m pretty sure anything with really negative side-effects (we’re talking suicidal ideation on several occasions) was apparent within a couple of DAYS at most and we didn’t try upping or cutting dosage, we turned to something else. I know I had some very stable periods of time in my life on certain meds because both of my cats are named after them.

        So yeah, if your doc is convinced you’re the problem and not the drug, it is 100% okay to fire your doctor and find someone who will listen to you, because you absolutely deserve to have a doctor who is on Team You and invested in you being happy and anxiety-free (or at least anxiety-managed!) instead of “take this for 6 weeks and don’t contact me until then”.

        Reply
        1. F.

          Just chiming in to say that I have had a similar experience with antidepressant/antianxiety meds over the past eighteen years. It really IS very individualized, and you do need to be working closely with a psychiatrist to be sure you are getting the right meds at the right dose. I also found that what worked for me for years no longer worked right after a number of years, and I had to change. Everyone is different.

          I chuckled at the thought that you named your cats after your meds! My cats have always been a very calming and soothing part of my life. I can’t quite imagine calling one escitalopram, though!

          Reply
          1. Programmer 01

            This is how I have Celexa (Lexie), Zoloft (Zoe) and Prozac (Zack) but you’re right, I spent a little while trying to figure out how to name a foster kitten some formulation of Prazosin and it just didn’t work as she wasn’t really a “Razz” sort of cat. Her name was Jinx which I thought was kind of awful as she’d been re-homed twice, so I renamed her Hijinks and she’s now with a forever home.

            I’ve admitted to a few people that my cats have saved my life more than once. Just knowing they needed me and were there was enough to keep me going through some rough patches.

            I had that “poop-out” effect with some meds too, although in my case it was labouring under a misdiagnosis, but man it’s awful going through that mess of “ok let’s try this until the side-effects go away or make it intolerable… ok let’s tweak the dose… welp let’s taper off and try the next one” and I wish everyone all the strength and advocacy and good doctors possible because it can be so disheartening.

            I’m on a med (Zoloft, to my delight as it is cheap and generic and my cat’s name remains unchallenged) that works and even though I will be taking it for the rest of my life, I am THRILLED with that, because I know what the alternatives are, and it WORKS.

            Reply
  4. Susan the BA

    Sending continuing good thoughts to the OP! I spent 7 years making progress towards managing my anxiety in my previous very-high-stress position, and have now spent a little over a year in a job that is much better for me. Leaving work at 5 with enough emotional energy to do something other than cry has allowed me to go to the gym regularly, and I’m off one of my medications and doing better than ever. I still need the coping skills that I developed during the previous job and I’m really glad I have them, but now they’re how I have great days instead of how I survive until tomorrow. OP, don’t give up!

    Reply
    1. Programmer 01

      Big hugs to you! Yes to this, people deserve to be happy and living, not just surviving, and I’m so glad you’re doing well. Well is a BIG DEAL. I say these days that my life is small but happier than I’ve ever been and it’s entirely thanks to my meds, therapy, and developing the skills I needed to manage my jerkbrain — and tomorrow will be better than today. Getting hope back is incredible.

      Reply
  5. AnonAcademic

    “I think I have a lot to learn about how to handle an inbox full of people asking me to do things that aren’t necessarily my core job responsibilities, and how to handle my own anxiety about… well, about just about everything, right now.”

    OP, this sounds so much like my current situation, having transitioned into a new higher pressure job after finishing grad school. I will list what’s helped in case it’s useful to you or anyone else:

    1. I prioritize tasks using an Eisenhower matrix, which helps me deal with frequent email requests that pop up from all directions: http://28oa9i1t08037ue3m1l0i861.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Eisenhower-Matrix-Actions.png

    2. Exercise – I am so glad I started regularly exercising before finishing grad school. I currently bike commute and get about 45 minutes of cardio a day. Some days it’s the only thing that keeps me sane. I can feel myself biking harder as I mentally flip through all the stress I’m dealing with and it releases so much of that nervous energy.

    3. Yoga/meditation – I had to start stretching to deal with #2 and just having a few quiet moments every day to process life really helps (especially with the “waking up in a panic” thing my anxiety likes to do).

    4. Medication – I currently medicate my anxiety on an as-needed basis after finding a medication that quickly brings me down from the edge of a panic attack without making me groggy and useless. Knowing that I have pharmacological help when I need it seems to make it less likely I’ll start panicking in the first place.

    Reply
    1. Testy McTesterson

      I had anti anxiety drugs too – I rarely needed to take them, but knowing I had them available means that I could deal with just about anything. I didn’t have to worry about losing control or looking stupid m, because I knew there was a circuit breaker in place.

      Reply
      1. Programmer 01

        Yessss this is my experience too. I call them my tiger charm, as I have never been attacked by a tiger while carrying them. It’s amazing having a safety net in your pocket.

        Reply
  6. Rahera

    Sounds like you’re doing really well, OP, getting the help you need and beginning to sort out the work-everything balance. I wish you all the best for the new year and the next steps. I’m sure we’re all willing you on :).

    Reply
  7. Ruffingit

    I can really relate to you OP! With my last job, I was responsible for so many things that it was just horrifically overwhelming. My ability to think straight went out the window and I was constantly stressed. The horror show of a boss I had was no help either. With my new job, the limited responsibilities and ability to leave work at work and enjoy my evening hours has been a huge help with feeling better mentally and otherwise. So glad you’re finding at least a little balance.

    Reply
  8. Erin

    Having worked at a small company, being the go-to person for everything, and then moving to a medium-sized, more structured company…I agree with you, I think that might be a better fit for you. In the meantime, you have an employer who is willing to work with you on your health needs, who you can (at least somewhat it sounds like) talk to about these things.

    Good luck and thanks for the update!

    PS – Had to look up “headdesking.” Definitely my new word.

    Reply
    1. ThursdaysGeek

      I avoided working for our local large employer because I like doing a lot of different things. And it turns out when I finally did get a job there, that I became a go-to person who did a huge variety of tasks.

      Reply
  9. Skeptic

    I am glad that things got better, however i must admit i am a bit unnerved that raising the dose of a particular psych medication was the first solution.

    I hope for a day when people learn to boast instead of the help alternate, healthier, more wholesome treatment plans…

    Reply
    1. A Non

      Funny thing about depression, it often prevents you from doing the “healthier, more wholesome” stuff. Someone who’s barely able to function at work isn’t going to be able to get more exercise, or cook healthier meals, or whatever it is you have in mind. Sometimes medication is a necessary first step so that people can get the energy to start taking better care of themselves.

      Depression is an illness, there’s medication available to treat it, it’s not morally weak or unhealthy to use it.

      Reply
      1. AnonForThisADHD

        +1000!

        Especially as an ADHD sufferer from one of the populations that gets underdiagnosed (it can be strongly tied to depression and anxiety as well, both of which my mother suffers from), I can totally relate to the misinformation that gets spread about psychiatry.

        Yes, I am and was “trying harder”. I had a drive to eat healthier and exercise more regularly as well, which helps symptoms to a nice albeit small degree (like caffeine), and it just wasn’t “clicking” and happening consistently.

        That’s why I had some success up until the diagnosis and nobody but me and the psychologist I finally ended up visiting suspected there was something wrong with me. It’s also why the medication worked so quickly and continues to work well to help me work as I want to work – not how my brain leads me to work. The drive was already there, but the road needed fixing up.

        In other words, treatment keeps my brain’s road to working hard consistently (in the direction I want to go) paved, rather than riddled with potholes and slush that pulls you onto other roads.

        The way I see it, exercise, healthy eating, and healthy thinking keep the tires patched and filled. That’s why you usually get therapy along with drugs. But psychiatry tries to fill the potholes, which prevents damage to the tires in the first place. It also allows you to build infrastructure so you can actually reliably fix the darn tires.

        Reply
        1. Programmer 01

          I’ve read several papers that said ADHD is under-diagnosed in general, and people only complain about it being “over-diagnosed” because we finally have the words and ability to diagnose and treat. People likely grumbled about Tuberculosis being over-diagnosed once people figured out that consumption was treatable with something other than leeches and caused by something other than “wandering organs” and “imbalanced humors”!

          Having the ability to identify and articulate something has only ever led to improvements. Knowing what’s up means you don’t have to re-invent the wheel when it comes to coping, managing, and otherwise getting what you need to be happy and healthy!

          Reply
        2. Banana Karenina

          I too belong to that “club” of under-diagnosed people with ADHD (late in life diagnosis), with its trusty twin companions of depression and anxiety. I like what you said about how the meds help you “help me work as I want to work – not how my brain leads me to work”. Would that all mental health professionals be able to design appropriate treatment in that direction. I do wish, though, that it wouldn’t take so much trial and error with meds to get the potholes filled and fixed.

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      2. Ruffingit

        YES. THIS!! Anti-anxiety medication changed my life. I resisted it for a long time and now realize just how stupid that was. It is like night and day for me. Medication may not be the right answer for everyone, just as some people need an insulin pump and others do fine with oral meds or whatever. But medication has been a big help to a lot of people so dismissing it as a first option isn’t right or fair.

        Reply
      3. "You do look glum! What you need is a gramme of soma."

        I do agree that it certainly isn’t a moral failing on the part of the employee.

        I think maybe the implication here is that it’s the toxic work environment that’s to blame, and that placing the problem back on the employee by suggesting that stronger doses of drugs will make it easier to cope is a little disappointing, even if it is true.

        Reply
      4. F.

        For me, the antidepressant/antianxiety meds get me back to a level where I am able to do to the other self-care (exercise, healthful food, mindful practices) that I also need to do.

        Reply
        1. Not me

          Me too. I don’t need it anymore, but it was necessary to get me somewhere that therapy might help.

          After medication and biofeedback, I’m able to take care of myself. Before that, I couldn’t, as I was busy having panic attacks and dissociating. Funny how that works.

          Reply
    2. Ask a Manager Post author

      Hey now. There’s no cause to think that the OP’s treatment plan isn’t the right one for her, any more than there would be to say that to a cancer patient about the course of chemo she was getting.

      Reply
      1. Fact & Fiction

        Exactly! When a part of your body isn’t working correctly, you treat it. The brain is a part of your body and when it malfunctions, you TREAT it. Different things work for different people but I am pretty tired of people not honking twice about medication for diabetes and such but oh noes! The horror if you need psych meds and assuming people haven’t, you know, tried those other things first.

        Reply
          1. Lynne

            My brain had set up this whole scenario before I got to your second comment, involving bumper stickers saying to honk for different medications, and tests you’d done to see which medications were more likely to get one, two, or no honks from other drivers….I’d just gotten to the point of wondering, “but why?” when I read this. Heh.

            (Totally agree that brain meds ought to be considered the same way as meds for any other part of one’s body. I think we’re slowly moving in that direction culturally, but we still have a long way to go.)

            Reply
  10. I have been there

    Medications, when one cannot function, or want to function in everyday activities, is often THE ray of hope that makes it possible to engage in normal activities (brushing teeth, taking out garbage, opening mail). When the glimmer of light begins to dawn, then activities that may or may not be normal (like exercise, meditation, and *cooking* whether it’s healthier meals or not) can happen.

    The effort involved in cooking is immense. You have to get out of bed and get dressed to drive to the store. You have to have some idea of what to buy. There are all these people around, and any minute you may start to cry again. Hmmm, do I have any idea what funds I have in the bank? And then the groceries have to be taken into the house and dealt with. By the time I get home I have probably eaten all the Cheetos and I am not hungry any more. Cooking, eating, and cleaning up? Putting groceries away? Not likely.

    I have had to use a broom to clear out the soda cans, snack food bags, and candy bar wrappers from under the bed and around my room. Mental illness is not “all in our minds” – it is because our bodies do not have what they need to function properly.

    Thankfully I have a very good psychiatrist who worked with me at length to find the right combination of medications that keep me on a pretty even keel. I would never presume to tell an insulin dependant diabetic that by eating healthier and exercising they wouldn’t need their insulin.

    And disclosing to a supervisor? Holy hell, that takes more courage and energy than one could imagine. OP, you have my utmost admiration for the way you have been able to “heal in place” – not sure I could do it.

    Let’s not question the treatment plan of anyone under medical care, please. This was an Update to OP’s original message. OP is doing well. And she was brave enough to report back.

    Reply
  11. Programmer 01

    Hugs to you, OP! This is tough stuff to deal with, and I so hear you on depression sneaking up on you.

    If it helps at all, I was diagnosed with depression for over 20 years and anxiety for the last 5 — turned out they were symptoms of PTSD, and once we started treating THAT, oh my goodness the difference. It’s a really common thing to crop up when someone’s mature and actually in a stable situation, as if your brain goes “Okay, now you are ready to deal with this — DEAL WITH IT ALL AT ONCE” and every time my support group gains a new person they tell the same story. I’m obviously not a doctor nor offering medical advice but it’s always an option to look into, because the “Ah-ha!” moment of pinning it down has been life-changing and it’s made every day so much better than I could have possibly imagined.

    Mental health stuff is HARD, there’s so much stigma attached to it, so many people are afraid to talk about it (I talk long and loud and so, so many people say “oh my gosh it’s not just me” who were scared to speak up, it’s awful!), there’s so much judgement even when I am taking meds for something that could not possibly be more “normal”, as in it’s how our brains are wired to respond to trauma and people respond the same across cultures, countries, and centuries.

    So hugs to you, for navigating this, for being strong enough to keep going, and wishing you all the happiness in life because you deserve it, this is not your fault, and it is not a failing or a weakness of any kind.

    Reply
    1. Sarahnova

      Ugh, PTSD. I went into massive denial about my sexual assault for over a year, and the way I explain it is, I managed to lock away the demons for a while, and broke off the key… but they got reeeeaaaaal strong and angry in there, and then eventually they broke down the door. :(

      All the best for your recovery. (Mine is well underway, fortunately.)

      Reply
      1. Programmer 01

        Hugs to you! That’s so very much what it is. I mean mine happened when I was a toddler, and yet it was rearing its head consistently in my teens, in my twenties, and shaped my behaviour all the way through my life until I got my diagnosis in my 30s. Now I know what the hell is going on, it’s not constantly surprising me with terrifying stuff, and those demons are soothed and settled and being taught that they don’t have to protect me anymore. I’m GOOD. My treatment is working, my therapy is working, I am to all appearances normal and recovered, even though I’ll be dealing with it for a long time. But like, I feel like “I’ve got this”, you know? Once in a while I stumble but I think that’s okay, once in a while I get blindsided but I’m able to parse out what’s going on and why and if I need a day under a pile of blankets work is totally okay with that. The joke on my team at work is that my home is really a giant pillow fort, and they send me Dog Fort pictures and in general are amazing about everything.

        Reply
    2. F.

      “Mental health stuff is HARD, there’s so much stigma attached to it, so many people are afraid to talk about it (I talk long and loud and so, so many people say “oh my gosh it’s not just me” who were scared to speak up, it’s awful!), ”

      I also talk about it and am not ashamed of my illness, even though my parents still judge me, and I left the Catholic church because two of my parish priests told me it was a sin to take antidepressants. (I told them the greater sin would be killing myself, which was the only other alternative!) If I can help even one person realize that there is treatment and hope, then all the talk is worth it.

      Reply
      1. Programmer 01

        Those priests make me furious, as if there isn’t enough stigma around medications that people NEED TO LIVE without trusted authorities adding to it. I’m sorry you had to go through that with people you love, but at the same time I’m glad you’re able to and are 100% right on the alternative not… being an alternative. At all.

        Reply
    3. Burned Out OP

      Programmer 01, could I get in touch with you privately? I don’t want to post my email publicly, and I understand if you don’t either – Alison has my email address, perhaps she could facilitate?

      Thanks.

      Reply
      1. Programmer 01

        Hugs, OP. carvedinshadows at gmail is me, I don’t mind posting it in public, and I’m absolutely here for you.

        Reply
  12. Stachington

    Hi OP! Just wanted to let you know I totally relate and am currently trying to find the right treatment for my anxiety since it is now affecting my work performance! Right now I’m trying CBT, more exercise, and trying to find the correct meds that don’t make me feel like I am looking through the world through a fish bowl. Good luck to you!

    Reply
  13. F.

    OP, I think it’s great that you are working on your burnout problem both from the personal angle and the business angle. Sometimes a change of company or field is what is required.

    I piggybacked on your original post back in August because I was/am going through a similar situation in my job. While it has gotten a little better in the short term (the new admin seems to be working out), I know I still have to do something in the long term. Since August, we have lost another member of the management team, taking us down from ten at the beginning of the year to six. Then a couple of weeks ago, my boss (a 44 year old, physically fit man) had a heart attack brought on by the stress of working at this place. Unfortunately, the owner (an alcoholic who takes everything he possibly can out of the company without killing it completely) is very much in denial about the condition of the firm and how demoralized the employees are. While I am finally going to work only 40 hours this week, I have been able to use only 48 out of 104 hours of PTO this year. Only *one* day of that was a full day off that didn’t have to do with car/house repairs or a medical appointment. So next year I will have 160 hours that I can’t realistically use. Big deal! I have come to the reluctant conclusion that I will need to find another job, preferably before I am forced to, and I have started looking. Not having an HR degree and being HR Manager for only 1-1/2 years means I will have to drop back to admin. asst. work and take at least a 20% pay cut at a time when I am finally able to save a little for retirement (I am 55). But I have to do something or I realize I probably won’t live long enough to retire anyway.

    Reply
  14. Purple Jello

    “I think I have a lot to learn about how to handle an inbox full of people asking me to do things that aren’t necessarily my core job responsibilities, and how to handle my own anxiety about… well, about just about everything, right now.”

    One of the things that has helped me is to learn to say to myself “not my problem”, then do diplomatically forward the request to the proper person, or return to sender, sometimes with suggestions

    Reply
    1. Vera

      I would love a “return to sender” function in Outlook. If e-mail weren’t already such a bear, and if people weren’t sensitive, it would be great to have quick-reply button with stock answers like, “Read your e-mail – not going to get to it today”, “Read your e-mail – not my job responsibility”, etc.

      Reply
      1. Purple Jello

        If you have Outlook, you can create “signatures” adding a standard response before your email signature. If you have the right version of Outlook, you could even use “Quick Steps” for a one-click process and set them up for each response you routinely use.

        Reply
  15. Kate

    Good to hear OP is on the road to full recovery! The only way to stop depression or stop it from sneaking up on you is to recognize when you’re having negative thoughts that lead to it and cut them off, or replace them with something positive. Or just look at the situation differently. Which is granted, very hard and sometimes you need help with it, but that you’re doing something, that’s already a great thing!
    Also, about this part: “I think I have a lot to learn about how to handle an inbox full of people asking me to do things that aren’t necessarily my core job responsibilities”; I know employers say that the best is a person with a “can-do attitude”, but that doesn’t mean you have to say YES to everything. Sometimes try to suggest a different person who would be better to handle it (presumably someone who has that in their job responsibilities), and see what happens.
    Nope, the world won’t end. They’ll be happy that someone is doing their stuff, you’re happy that you’re NOT doing that stuff and the person doing the stuff is happy cause that’s their job to do. Everyone is happy, and you’re less stressed! I’m not saying say no to everything which isn’t your responsibility to handle, but weigh in; would it take too much time/energy/hassle for you to do it under your current workload and with your deadlines? Would it make more sense to let someone else do it, who has that in their job description? Try to say no sometimes. It is within your rights :)

    Reply
  16. Jen

    I just want to add that this totally reminded me of the video for “I could be the one” by Nicky Romero, right down to the Tahiti comment. (BTW, if you watch it, make sure you watch to the very very end)

    Reply
  17. DrJulesSunny

    Thanks for the update, OP. I so identify with your situation that it seems almost identical – but my bosses are not as collaborative and I work in a larger organization that is much more detached from the experience of the staff and focuses completely on numbers … It took a while for me to recognize that I was experiencing a depressive episode and that my anxiety had increased to the point of being unable to function. Close friends and coworkers noticed it first and suggested that I take FMLA. When I finally allowed myself to see what was truly going on with me, I realized it was FMLA or my sanity AND my job. It was a no-brainer for my psychiatrist, who completed my paperwork for me super quickly, as if he had been waiting for me to give him the go ahead! I’m taking 4 weeks and I’m a little more than halfway through at this point, so I can’t say for sure yet exactly how well it’s worked, but I can say that I am finally getting rest, seeing a therapist weekly, focusing on my health, and reducing my anxiety just by being out of there for a while.

    So, if you can, can you consider FMLA? It was the best decision I could’ve possibly made.

    Good luck … You are sooooo not alone.

    Reply
  18. Going forward

    First, kudos to you for working so diligently on finding solutions. As a manager, I would be concerned that you’re taking off so much time on a regular basis. Maybe you could look at taking breaks/long lunches instead? You could go for a walk, try one of the adult coloring books, read a book, or grab a snack. If not, you really should look at FMLA to protect your job.

    Reply
  19. Tracy

    I’m also glad to see that you are doing better. What type of job is it that is causing all the stress? Also, what state are you in? I live in RI and they would never be accommodating.

    Reply
  20. Rose

    She’s lucky! I did this with my boss after realizing I was way past burnout. He had no intention of lessening my work load or giving me a break, or hiring anybody at all (which he had promised to do a few months earlier but apparently changed his mind). I was “laid off” the following week.

    Reply

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