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How to Avoid Developer Burnout (8 Simple Tips)

Is your work stress causing you to feel helpless and completely exhausted both mentally and physically? This may be the sign that you are facing Burnout. According to the Help Guide, Burnout is a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress

Being a developer, you are in a constant state of stress to meet your project deadlines and come up with new solutions to the problems of your clients. Often many developers work for 12 to 18 hours a day to reduce their work burden.

It occurs when the developers feel overwhelmed, emotionally and physically drained and unable to meet deadlines.

This constant stress to meet others’ expectations causes them to lose interest in their profession, leaving them emotionally, mentally and physically drained.

In this video, we are going to share with you 8 simple tips to avoid Developer Burnout, along with the causes and symptoms of Burnout. So you can avoid experiencing chronic burnout. Stay tuned with us until the end of this video because we are also going to share with you some tips to get through Developer burnout if you’re facing one already.

Without further ado, here are some things that might Cause You Developer Burnout.

  • You are Always In a Rush to complete things and meet deadlines. This traps you in a vicious circle of hurry, irritation, unmet deadline and exhaustion.
  • As a developer, you face failures often when developing applications. Continuously Facing Failures causes you to associate your work and efforts with the end result of failure.
  • Being Isolated from your friends and family for an extended period.
  • Lack of Sleep and Proper Diet has a negative effect on your health that leaves your body exhausted.

And here is how you can Identify That You Might Be Experiencing Burnout;

  • Severe lack of motivation and enthusiasm for programming
  • Feeling mentally and emotionally numb
  • Feeling isolated and lonely
  • Loss of sense of achievement and accomplishment
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Facing mood swings
  • Feeling indifferent
  • Facing Insomnia

Experiencing Developer Burnout might cost you a lot. So, we present to you 8 Simple Tips to Avoid Developer Burnout.

8- Listen To Your Body

Working as a developer, you have to work constantly. But there is a limit to every human body’s capacity for work. Listen to your body. Don’t Overwork yourself. Your body needs to restore its energy to get ready to work again. 

When you feel physically or mentally tired, stop doing your work. Take Breaks and allow your body to recuperate. The Pomodoro Method of working is really great. You work in a day with 25 minutes chunks followed by a 5-minute break. After four Pomodoro sessions, you take a rest of 15-20 minutes. This allows your mind to revive and also prevents you from complete collapse from exhaustion.

7- AMP Framework

According to the book Drive by Daniel H. Pink, you should follow the AMP Framework to find the real meaning and motivation behind the job or work you are doing. AMP stands for Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose.

According to Autonomy, you have to own your work and efforts. As a developer, all the accomplishments and achievements belong to you when you have worked for them.

Mastery says that there is no limit to your learning capabilities. Instead of blaming yourself for not knowing things, take your time to learn new things.

The element of Purpose stresses that you have to work towards a long-term purpose. You should use your skills to a greater goal you are passionate about.

This framework helps you to find the true meaning behind all the efforts you are putting into work and gives you motivation.

6- Avoid Imposter Syndrome

As a developer, the constant feeling of being not good enough for your job and not knowing enough is what we call Imposter Syndrome. This condition forces you to feel that you are pretending to be good enough for your role and discredit your achievements. 

This feeling then causes you to work more and more to justify your accomplishments, ultimately causing burnout.

So to avoid developer burnout, you have to Get Rid of Imposter Syndrome by;

  • Owning and keeping track of your achievements
  • Accepting that you cannot know everything
  • Talking about this to your friends and peers etc.

5- Define Clear Boundaries between Your Work and Life

Developing and programming is a challenging profession. You face new challenges every day. As a developer, you try to work everything out and work for many hours, even reaching 12-18 hours a day. This causes a Disruption Between Your Work and Personal Life. Your relationships are agitated by this imbalance, which causes you stress and anxiety. When this stress is prolonged, it makes you experience Developer Burnout.

So to Avoid Burnout, you have to Set Clear Boundaries Between Your Work and Your Personal Life. Work can wait. You also have to give time to yourself and your family. Set specific hours for work. Learn to Say ‘’NO’’ to things and projects, no matter how appealing they are, if they are going to disturb your work-life balance.

4- Exercise and Meditate Often

Exercise and meditation help in Reducing Mental Stress and Fatigue. To avoid Developer Burnout, try to Exercise and Meditate Regularly or 3-4 times once a week. They help you take your mind off the constant work stress and revive your mental and physical energy. They also help you to develop a Greater Focus and Concentration.

3- Have a Regular Diet and Sleep Schedule

A Regular and Optimized Diet is necessary for health. Developers usually reside on eating junk food instead of eating a proper meal which affects their body adversely. The declining body health causes physical and mental fatigue and irritation which leads to burnout. So to dodge burnout, have a proper diet with optimum portions of nutrients required by an adult human.

Good and Quality Sleep is also vital for your health and well-being. Adults need sleep of more than 7 hours to wake up fresh. Many developers suffer from insomnia due to the constant pressure of work. This prolonged insomnia can also cause Developer burnout. To avoid burnout;

  • Set your sleep schedule
  • Minimize distractions
  • Limit the use of caffeine
  • Limit exposure to blue light
  • Sleep in either dim lights or a blackout

2- Go on Vacations

Developers usually work day and night without even taking breaks and vacations. This constant job stress can cause developer burnout. The best thing to do is to know when to take a break. Whenever you feel Overwhelmed or Overworked, you should go on vacation at least Once Every Six Months for 15-20 Days. This changes the environment and circumstances around you. And gives your brain some time to relax. Visiting a new place helps you get your energy and focus back. 

1- Talk to Others

Keeping everything inside yourself and dealing with every emotional disturbance alone can also exhaust you emotionally. You have to talk to your family and friends about the things you are going through. Having Someone Who Can Listen to You, really Helps In Coping Up with stress and anxiety. Sharing your stress and anxiety with your friends and family helps avoid Developer Burnout.

Besides this, also communicate with your superiors or managers about your condition. Tell them the truth that you can only work up to your limits and refuse to take excessive work when you cannot do it.

If, after hearing all this, you have come to know that you are already suffering from developer Burnout? Don’t worry. We have come up with bonus Tips for YOU to Cope With Ongoing Burnout effectively.

  1. Visit a therapist.
  2. Take some time off and indulge in some other hobbies.
  3. Learn to say no to work, which would require you to overexert yourself.
  4. After coming back from your vacation, take things slow. Don’t repeat the same mistake.
  5. Try a different coding niche or language.
  6. Change your working environment.

Developer burnout is a Serious Problem. Never ignore this and reach out for help. Ignoring it and working nonstop can lead you to Chronic Burnout, which is very difficult to treat. You might have to take a break for as long as a year to heal.

Have you ever experienced Developer Burnout?

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