I don't believe I'm alone in stating that 2020 has been a roller coaster ride for all the accountants. It might be difficult to keep up with the constant amendments and modifications happening throughout the period. Many people in the accounting industry have suffered from pandemic burnout as a result of the Covid pressures. During the coronavirus-caused service loop, many accountants have been fighting an uphill struggle of never-ending grants, VAT reverse charge, Brexit furlough claims, and customers in despair. While they wish to return to a regular workload, the clients appear to become "more and more demanding and impatient."
According to a headline in the Daily Express last week, “Rishi Sunak urges all Britons to return to work as soon as possible.” He also claimed that young people would benefit from working in an office setting, however, it remains a debatable subject. Some argue that return to the workplace has added another layer of stress to the industry, with many considering quitting after such an exhaustive year. Meanwhile, the imminent MTD implementation is putting some accountants on edge.
Burnout is a state of emotional, physical, and mental fatigue brought on by continuous and severe stress. It happens when you are overburdened, emotionally exhausted, and unable to match continual expectations.
Stress is our body’s reaction to pressure. Stress may be caused by a variety of conditions or occurrences in one's life. It is frequently activated when we encounter something new, unexpected, or challenges our sense of self.
Burnout is not the same as stress and should not be used interchangeably. As accountants, we are accountable for far too many various aspects of our workplaces. First and foremost, we must ensure safety. Next, we should care about our employees and provide them with the best working environment. At the same time, we must maintain client satisfaction. The stark alternative is that we end up running an accounting firm that loses money and ultimately goes out of business.
There are a few things you may do to assist maintain your mental health and reduce stress. Choose an activity that has been proven to help complete the stress cycle:
- Venting is beneficial - You must be able to express your frustrations in some way. Discuss what you're experiencing, why you're feeling that way, and how to relieve it as much as possible. The emotional distinction is the capacity to detect and describe the many emotions you are experiencing; therefore, while this may appear to be random knowledge, it is not. Emotional difference fundamentally governs how you perceive and solve challenges.
- Physical health is also essential - Taking care of your mental health is only one aspect of overall wellness. Exercise is not only a fantastic method to reduce stress, but it is also said to improve your attitude, self-concept, and work performance. Again, as a professional, it is in your best interest to take care of yourself first. Because some gyms and fitness facilities are closed or limited as a result of COVID-19, consider strolling or running in a park or watching workout videos in your living room.
- Plans only function if they are properly put up - Make a work schedule that suits you. Allow yourself some rest and be realistic about your personal and professional objectives. Having a list of 50 things to accomplish when you know you can only get 10 done in a workday is very unproductive. Be upbeat but realistic.
- You should have faith in the people you surround yourself with - Try to surround yourself around good individuals that you trust and whom you can rely on, in positions where it counts the most. This is a difficult skill to acquire since it necessitates knowing your team's strengths and limitations not just as individuals but also as a group. It impossible to accomplish it all, no matter how much we would like to believe otherwise. However, we need to work as a team to succeed.
You may have noticed that when we completely engage in any of these activities, we tend to exhale a huge sigh of relaxation. This signals to the brain that the stressor is no longer present. Of course, it is important to note that if you believe you are already at burnout or that your stress has surpassed your ability to manage problems on your own, there are excellent tools and support networks available. Please contact your GP, MIND, or SANE, or locate a competent therapist to speak things over with. We weren't expecting the tax season we received this year, but we're all trying our best. Take care of yourself first and realise that the end is near! So, keep embracing positivity!