In our current situations, we have all faced many critical, unpredictable conditions not seen before. We have dealt with in our years of service overcoming what many have referred to as “burnout,” not motivated, exhausted, and leads me to what I believe is replacing all of these words in our workplaces today: “Drainout.”
Think about how you and your co-workers feel right now. How do you feel overall? What are the topics of conversation you are having? When do you have a time in your day you feel completely at ease? Do you have a place where you can relax?
“Drainout” does not happen just at work; it can occur in every aspect of life. We have for decades heard about “burnout” in reference to how people get at work when they feel stressed or overworked. Still, We know we need to add several more layers to this phase due to Covid-19, trauma, inflation, and shortages of supplies, and the list can be expanded to include many more topics creeping into our lives.
“Drainout” results from a trauma to our workforce, families, communities, churches, and overall life. The emotional stress, changes, and demands drain each individual as the energy is being pulled in many directions. Employees, leaders, and families are exhausted of the emotions, energy, and ability to think, create or engage at the levels needed to achieve and thrive. People are feeling they have no control over situations and leading to a massive increase in mental health needs as “Drainout” is hitting every profession, industry, home, and community.
What can we do?
This is an enormous problem with not one solution. I believe there will be many solutions to work on to help elevate the number of issues facing individuals today. Continuing to throw money at problems I can identify as not the solution. Money only adds a layer to the issues we face, as we have to pay the money back. It is a cycle of repeating bad decisions. Inflation reduces the value of our money and increases our debt.
We can begin to look at what we can do as individuals to help stop the “Drainout” for ourselves:
- Admit we have a problem- The first step in finding a solution is to admit we have a problem to solve. Once you have acknowledged the problem, we can begin to address the next steps.
- Identify the areas to address- We have admitted a problem; now, we need to break down the problem into areas to address. Example: Not anytime to have fun with my friends. Spending too much money and not enough to pay all of the bills. I am always tired.
- We are setting action steps: Problem-Areas and now action steps. Examples of actions to take for those we mentioned above. *Utilize a calendar to schedule activities, meetings, everything we need to do, and what we want. Color code it to identify the areas you are spending your time. *Develop a budget to monitor spending. *Set a scheduled time to go to bed and utilize a sleep application to monitor the amount of sleep you are receiving.
- Analysis: Problem-Areas-Action Steps=Analysis Now, take the time to review the data you have collected. What have you learned? What changes could be made to improve?
- Implement: Now, you are ready to implement the solutions you have identified. This will help you reduce areas you are wasting and improve the quality of time, money, and priorities.
As one glove does not fit all, we may need to have immediate solutions for the issues we face. “Drainout” is how it sounds. Individuals may be so drained they need immediate help from professionals. It is perfectly acceptable, and you should always ask for help. Coaches, mentors, support groups, networking groups, and other professionals are there to help you. I have used them all, and I am one as well. It is essential to have a structured system to support you today more than at any other time in our history. Here are some additional ideas for support:
- Eat healthier- Grab some fruit instead of chips
- Excercise- Take a walk during lunch
- Listen to music- Find some tunes that help you relax
- Journal write- Sometimes writing can help you express, reflect and decompress
- Creating a safe space/time- We all enjoy having a particular spot with things that help us feel safe and good.
- Track your stress, feelings, and events that cause anxiety
- Learn strategies to use when you feel stress, anxiety, or anger. Breathing
- Do something you like to do!
There is much to discuss “Drainout” as we face many troubling issues. Let’s work on replenishing everyone by providing a kind word to each one we see and meet. Provide opportunities to share in networking, groups, and connecting. Show patience, understanding, and empathy to others. There are many things we can do to help fight against “Drainout.”