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White River Manor is a registered essential service provider and amidst the COVID-19 pandemic continues to offer a world class therapetic Program. We have taken every precaution to maintain the integrity of our environment and screen clients both before and on arrival. Our staff too undergo regular testing and screening to ensure the safety of our clients.

    Quiet quitting and navigating an unfulfilling work-life balance

    Whether you like it or not, the workplace and people’s attitudes towards labour are changing.

    With inflation, an increasing difficulty for young people to get on the housing ladder, and a cost-of-living crisis, it’s perhaps unsurprising that motivation to go above and beyond in the workplace is waning.

    This has given rise to a phenomenon called ‘quiet quitting’, which has appeared more and more on social media in recent weeks and months, especially among Gen Z and millennial professionals. But what is it?

    A subtle rebellion?

    Though the name may suggest it, quiet quitting doesn’t actually involve quitting any job. In fact, it means doing less in your place of work and refusing to go unreasonably beyond the call of duty.

    This could manifest in turning down weekend work or overtime or even choosing to not look at or answer emails or calls outside work hours. Essentially, it’s anything to ensure that work isn’t coming at a cost to your well-being.

    More and more people are turning their backs on this toxic lifestyle and have decided to take charge and set boundaries for themselves at work. That means doing less overall but still fulfilling their job requirements – even if it’s the bare minimum.

    Quiet quitting, therefore, is a way for workers self-manage and stop their work from seeping into other areas of their life.

    How do you ‘quiet quit’ your job?

    What are the signs and symptoms of mental illness

    Generally, quiet quitting means becoming less emotionally invested in the success of the company or project you’re involved in and no longer exceeding expectations of you.

    While there are a number of ways to ease off the gas in your job while still complying with the terms of your employment contract, some are easier than others and depend a lot on the type of character you are.

    For example, some people might find it easy to simply say “no” to tasks outside their original job description. However, others who shy away from conflict might find it challenging to take a stand against their superiors.

    Other examples of quiet quitting include making sure you leave the office on time (and leave work at work), finding productivity hacks that work for you, and proactively setting your limits (like not working during evening and weekends). Again, in some cases, this could be easy. However, those who feel guilt over “letting others down” could find it difficult to tear themselves away when they know there is still work to be done and that the burden is likely to fall on someone else as a result of their actions.

    Ultimately, with quiet quitting, you have to remember that you cannot be responsible for the actions of others and that you’re just another cog in a machine that can easily be replaced.

    Why are people ‘quiet quitting’?

    In essence, quiet quitting is a response to a growing number of undesirable and potentially toxic trends in the modern workplace.

    The fact that the word “burnout” is now part of common parlance demonstrates not only the growing pressures posed by work but also a general awareness of the importance of self-care and safeguarding mental health.

    All too often nowadays, work can seep into the rest of our life, giving us less time to relax, practise self-care, socialise, spend time with the family, exercise or simply do the things we enjoy spending time on.

    As a result, more and more people are fighting back to regain some semblance of a positive work-life balance and escape a rat race that may no longer give them a lot in return.

    Giving up your well-being doesn’t seem like a sacrifice worth taking when you’re inadequately compensated. When “going the extra mile” at work is not reflected in your bank balance, position, status, or even acknowledgement, this can be hugely demoralising.

    Likewise, it’s easy to check out mentally if you feel that materialism and profits are being prioritised over human values, such as compassion and self-development.

    Why setting boundaries is important

    gen z burn out group

    The quiet quitting phenomenon really took off as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, during which many people re-evaluated their priorities, especially concerning work.

    With more people now able to work from home, employers are feeling increasingly powerless to stop workers from setting healthier boundaries – especially without the boss in the room anymore.

    Younger generations, in particular, are feeling more empowered to look out for themselves. Unlike the previous generations, who were brought up to believe that anything was possible with hard work and dedication, younger adults don’t have the same faith that the system will work for them. And they’re taking action.

    The consequences of overwork, burnout, and stress on your health mustn’t be underestimated. Setting boundaries is essential.

    Quiet quitting doesn’t have to be the solution. After all, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with working hard, particularly if you’re working towards personal objectives, such as a promotion or a dream role. For many people, work provides them with a sense of purpose.

    That said, working hard mustn’t be at the expense of your health and mental well-being, which is why setting boundaries is important. 

    The dangers of unhealthy working habits

    Burnout, depression, anxiety, and work addiction are all very serious conditions that can arise as a result of developing unhealthy working habits.

    In the case of burnout, it doesn’t just happen suddenly; it’s your body’s reaction to an accumulation of long-term unresolved stress.

    That’s why it’s vital that we regularly assess how we’re doing and learn to recognise the warning signs our body sends, whether physical, mental, or emotional.

    Most typically, these are exhaustion, headaches or dizziness, muscle tension or pain, stomach problems, chest pain, difficulty concentrating, being irritable and snappy, and developing irregular eating and sleeping patterns. In some cases, this can lead to substance abuse.

    It’s also essential to manage our stress and implement healthier habits, especially around food, exercise, sleep, and rest.

    Unfortunately, not everyone is equipped or has the skills to prevent burnout or tackle any underlying, associated issues.

    If you struggle with prioritising your health and your work has become overbearing and demoralising, you could benefit from outside, professional help.

    Get the help you need 

    How to hold a successful intervention

    At White River Manor, our multidisciplinary team has extensive experience in treating burnout and understands the unique strains experienced by high-level professionals.

    Through a combination of talking therapies and consultations with dieticians and personal trainers, we can get to the root of the problem in your relationship with your work. 

    Our wellness program at White River Manor is the perfect tonic for stress and burnout. Get the help you need for lasting change while exploring the best that South Africa has to offer – at a fraction of the cost of recovery centres in Europe and America.

    Reset, recharge and return home with renewed purpose and enthusiasm.

    If you’d like to know more about our program and how it can get you back to your old self, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.