Most of us will attribute burnout to tight deadlines, an angry boss, unpleasant coworkers, or simply having too much on our plates. But it seems the cause of job stress is a lot more complicated than working long hours. A study published in the Journal Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology found that home and social life are major contributing factors to job stress.
Researchers surveyed 1,954 employees in Quebec and took a variety of factors into account, such as household income, gender, age, if they had a supportive boss, and if they had children. They found that each of these factors contributed to how stressed out individuals feel at work.
For example, the participants who lived with a partner or had strong social ties outside of work had fewer mental health issues in relation to their workplace. This was also true for those with newborn children.
"In the end, we need to consider broadening approaches in occupational mental health to avoid coming to erroneous conclusions about the relationship between work and mental health," the researchers wrote in their study.
"This is a call to action," co-author and Concordia professor Steve Harvey said in a statement. "Researchers need to expand their perspective so that they get a full picture of the complexity of factors that determine individuals' mental health."
If you find yourself feeling unusually stressed out at work, take a look at other aspects of your life. How is your social life? How are you spending downtime? Do you see your loved ones enough? Simply making time to have dinner with your friends could help you enjoy your job again.