Lead Image © Chatree Jaiyangyuen, 123RF.com

Lead Image © Chatree Jaiyangyuen, 123RF.com

Dealing with IT Burnout

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Article from ADMIN 50/2019
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I'm not the first writer or the first system administrator to discuss IT job burnout, but I think I have a few ideas to help when it happens to you.

I'm not the first writer or the first system administrator to discuss IT job burnout, but I think I have a few ideas to help when it happens to you. Burnout is when you proclaim, perhaps too loudly or with added expletives, that you've had enough of this job. IT is one of those fields that seems to have a very high percentage of burnout. The obvious reasons are long hours, difficult problems, users, aging hardware, slacking coworkers, offshore outsourcing, and uncaring management and leadership. We all deal with burnout. You might be dealing with it right now. Long hours seem to be one of the biggest complaints – you work all day long, have changes at night, and then the process continues.

Most of us got into IT either because we were good at it and we transitioned to it by accident or we wanted to get into a growing field on the edge of new technology. In both cases, we were duped. Now, don't get me wrong, I love what I do – most of the time. I've always heard that if you "Do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life." This is untrue. If you do what you love without the pressures of an income, users, management, failures, slackers, and security issues, you'll never work a day in your life. Without these pressures, it's a hobby, not a job. Hobbies are enjoyable. Jobs are not. You get paid to do a job because it is not easy and it is a pain. If it were fun and easy, someone could probably automate it or find someone a lot less expensive to do it.

Said no one, ever: "I'm ready to go back to work because skiing is just too stressful," or, "Man, I can't wait to stop painting so many of these canvases and get back to the old grindstone." Moreover, you're not likely to ever hear anyone say, "I never want to retire. I want to reboot computers until I'm in my 80s."

If you never see the sun, you're going to burn out quickly. If you never hear, "Thank you," you'll never last. If you don't

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