Stress in the workplace—inclusive of Christian ministry and the home–has become an increasingly needed topic for attention over the past few decades. Stress related concerns are obviously important to workers but management/leadership is also concerned about this problem:
–Increased stress causes illness, disease and depression and all can increase medical and insurance costs.
–Increased stress has been shown to increase absenteeism and employee turnover.
There are many causes of stress and a combination of contributing factors has been shown in scientific studies to be associated with higher rates of hypertension and heart attacks. A report from the Mayo Clinic states: “A long-term activation of the stress-response system can disrupt almost all your body’s processes, increasing your risk of obesity, insomnia, digestive complaints, heart disease and depression.” It is difficult to calculate the economic costs and the pressure these spiraling diseases and conditions have on individuals, families, places of employment and our health-care system.
In addition, stress in the workplace reduces productivity and can also lead to burnout (or to a lesser degree brownout). Burnout is a prolonged response to chronic emotional and interpersonal stressors on the job, and is defined by the three dimensions of exhaustion, cynicism, and inefficacy.
For years we have called this “Elijahitis” a name derived from the Biblical account of Elijah at the Juniper tree after Mr. Carmel (I Kings 19). Symptoms from this severe type of stress—burnout and brownout–in the workplace include:
–fatigue and lack of energy and motivation, emotional depletion,
–markedly diminished sense of humor, satisfaction, self-confidence, and ability to concentrate.
–too little self-care and persistent and significant depression
New Hope Outreach brings you good news! This blog and our monthly R&R Wire delivered into your inbox were created to provide much past and ongoing researched information for Biblical self-care both for you and those who work with you!
Our research was started for two reasons: 1.) The experience of our staff in warfare with unnamed affects. 2.) Our observations and experiences while working with other organizations, ministry staff and busy homemakers. We have experienced and believe stress and burnout information can, in turn, help your workplace—your job, ministry or home–become, or sustain, a healthy and productive work environment.
If you are in leadership we hope you will consider doing what others are doing with positive results and share this information with those who work with you.
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