The Fatigue Monster! What can I do to defeat this monster?
“Signs of fatigue soon manifested themselves more and more, and slowly men dropped out one by one, from sheer exhaustion. No murmur of complaint, however, would be heard.” - Fritz Kreiser -
What is this Fatigue Monster?
Fatigue can be described as the feeling of being tired most of the time and is slightly different from when you feel sleepy or drowsy. Fatigue could also be described as severe lack of energy, physical or mental exhaustion and poor levels of motivation.
Fatigue is a common problem individuals face and may occur in state of physical and mental tiredness. Fatigue can affect anyone regardless of ethnicity, skills, knowledge or job specification.
The fight between your employees and the Fatigue Monster:
Fatigue could negatively affect the health and safety of employees and increase the risk of injuries or other accidents.
A fatigued worker is potentially dangerous to themselves and others, and the highest rate of catastrophic incidents are usually found among fatigued shift employees.
Additionally, it is of utmost importance that managers need to understand the causes of fatigue and deal with it proactively.
What are the causes of Fatigue?
Fatigue may not always be the result of a disease however, fatigue could be caused by medical and non-medical factors.
Factors that can contribute either alone or combined can be:
Psychological and Psychosocial (stress, anxiety and depression);
Physical (diabetes, glandular fever and cancer); or
Physiological (pregnancy, breast-feeding, inadequate sleep, and excessive exercise).
Fatigue Fun Facts:
Diet and exercise can help combat fatigue.
Checking your cell before bed amps up brain activity, making it harder to doze off, which in turn will not help an individual to combat fatigue.
Dehydration can make you feel mentally sluggish and mess with your concentration, drink enough water to reduce the symptoms of fatigue.
Did you know there are two types of Fatigue?
1. Physical Fatigue:
This is when an individual finds it physically difficult to do the same activities they normally did or used to do with ease.
2. Mental Fatigue:
Mental fatigue can be described as the inability to maintain optimal cognitive performance. Mental fatigue is gradual and depends on additional factors such as sleep deprivation and the overall health of the individual.
How do I win the Fatigue Monster?
There is no single treatment for fatigue as the approach of managing it depends solely on the individual’s willingness to overcome fatigue, and to identify the cause of tiredness. In order to combat fatigue the following lifestyle changes could be incorporated;
Ensure that you get 6 – 8 hours’ sleep per night;
Reducing intake of caffeine to 2 cups per day;
Drink plenty of water;
Set realistic expectations for in your work and personal life to complete your workload and schedule;
Take time to relax;
Identify and deal with stressors;
Reduce consumption of alcohol and nicotine; and
Maintain a work-life balance.
How can Business Dynamics Consultants assist?
Don’t let the Fatigue Monster become the elephant in the room.
We can assist you to identify, fight and win the Fatigue Monster by: