According to a litany of research, depression spikes during the holiday season. Common causes are stress, fatigue, family-related issues, loneliness, unrealistic expectations, reduced sunlight, etc.*
And while the holidays may be a causal factor for personal depression, they can also contribute to professional depression. Professional depression, also known as Career Depression Syndrome or CDS**, is a prolonged unhappiness, moodiness, and worry about one’s career and its future. The holidays contribute to this condition because the turn of the calendar brings so many concerns to mind.
Am I growing in my profession?
Is our business growing?
What are the end of year numbers going to look like?
Ugh, tax season is just around the corner.
And a host of other concerns.
So, what can you do to fight off these worries and concerns? ProSight Success offers three tips to fight off you Career Depression Syndrome. To best fend off Career Depression Syndrome,
Maximize Your Time at Work
Establish Concrete and Actionable Business and Career Goals
Find a Mentor
Maximize Your Time at Work – If your schedule is not full, fill it. So many people love the holiday season because schedules lighten up. People want to cruise into Christmas and sleep through the week until the New Year, and while many may be tired, this pattern is a recipe for disaster. The solution is not just to work and work, but instead, make each moment meaningful. If not actively working, then give reviews, clean up your office, train your staff, study for your own professional development. Just know, mindless moments are never just that. Your brain can’t shut off at work, and in the event of nothing to fill it, disappointment and depression often seep in. Of course, one thing you can do with extra time is…
Establish Concrete and Actionable Business and Career Goals – Nothing will give you a sense of hope at the end of the year than setting concrete and actionable goals. Doing so allows you to see the past year not as a failure, but instead, a launching point for the coming year. Yes, this year may not have been as great as you wanted, but setting a big goal for the following year, that includes actionable steps, will give you hope. Be sure, however, to make sure these goals have action steps and can be measured at the end of the year. “Make more money” or “be happy” are not concrete and can hardly have actionable steps. Amorphous goals only increase the likelihood of depression. Perhaps you feel like you need some guidance to do these things. Then tip three will help.
Find a Mentor – Whether you think you need a mentor or not, you do. Everyone needs trusted coaches and advisors because the moment we stop learning is the moment we stop growing, and stunted personal and professional growth always leads to despair. Take this time at the end of the year to look for a mentor. Interview them. Ask for references. Find someone who can mentor, tutor, coach, and even disciple you. It will get your year started out on the right foot and protect you from despairing at year end.
My hope for you this year is that you can take steps to protect yourself from Career Depression Syndrome. If you have chronic depression, know that you are not alone. Many folks struggle, and there is no shame. Don’t suffer alone. Reach out. If you are feeling suicidal, please ask for help now. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline Phone Number is 1-800-273-8255.
We hope the next year is your best year yet.
Gordon Duncan is the CEO/Consultant of ProSight Success. He has worked in the eye care industry for nearly 20 years. He has consulted in the medical field, manufacturing, accounting, and many other disciplines.
ProSight offers resources to put you back in control of your practice.
P.S. ProSight Success has a 7-volume playbook to put all of these things in place. Typically, this resource costs $199. I have cut its cost 50%. From now until the end of the year, you can purchase the ProSight Success System in paperback for $100.
P.S.S. If you can’t afford these investments, ProSight offers a free e-book to get you started. Just go to www.profitableeyecare.com to get your copy
Gordon Duncan is an award-winning educator, salesman, teacher, manager, and writer. He has taught in the public school system, lobbied for school's accreditation, managed eye clinics, led sales' teams, and also publishes books on theology, church, and culture.