It’s not really a surprise many of us let pressures in the workplace get to us – long commutes, demanding jobs and working as many hours as it takes to get through your job list each day. That’s just some of the challenges we can face each day in the work environment.

But what’s the difference between the usual workday stresses and being completely ‘burnt out’? Job burnout can cause you to dread going to work each day, create tension with your colleagues and see a noticeable decline in your productivity. Not only that, it can lead to a number of health issues – excessive stress, fatigue, insomnia, high blood pressure and being more prone to illnesses.

So the question is, why do people get to this point and how can you help yourself or your employees?

Here in the UK, employees who work five days a week are entitled to a minimum of 28 days annual leave a year (this can include bank holidays). Giving workers paid leave shouldn’t be seen as a perk – it’s a measure put in place to ensure the health and well-being of employees. However, according to the 2018 Glassdoor annual leave survey, only around half of employees actually take all of their holiday each year.

Taking time away from the office allows you to rest, relax and recharge. A good work-life balance is essential and a break gives you the perfect excuse to go on holiday, visit family or even just get some of those much neglected DIY jobs done! But a simple change of scenery really does go a long way – and your employer should do their utmost to encourage staff to make the most of what they are entitled to.

For those feeling the effects of office burnout, seek the support of colleagues, family and friends to help you cope, or consider exercise or a relaxing activity like yoga or meditation to help with stress. Sleep is important too, so get as much as you can.

There are even things you can do to help when you are in the office. Taking regular breaks, even if it’s to walk to the kitchen for a drink, pick your work up from the printer. A quick move around allows you to take a step away from your work and helps clear your mind. Make sure you make the most of lunch break as well – it’s called a break for a reason!

But most importantly, take some time off. Try not to let the demands of your job be bad for your health. We all deserve a much needed break from time to time – we earn it after all!