How to Prevent Burnout in the Banking and Finance Sector

Life in the banking and finance industry can be fast-paced and all-consuming. But working yourself
into the ground isn’t good for business – and it certainly isn’t good for your mental health.
Learning how to prevent burnout then will be an incredibly useful tool in your professional arsenal:
allowing you to perform at your best, and thrive in and out of work.

Rest is For Winners: Why it Pays to Prioritise Wellbeing

Demanding workloads, tight deadlines, and competition over promotions and projects can all lead to high stress levels; stress isn’t always bad for us – in fact, it can act as a great motivator – but the key is in recovery. If we don’t take the time to winddown from stressful periods, we never get the opportunity to decompress and fully recharge. 

And that’s what leads to burnout. 

The potential impact of burnout for people in the banking and financial services sector can be serious – impacting your life, your business, and your clients. 

Part of the pressure comes from knowing you need to be on top of your game, but looking after your wellbeing really is the only way to stay there. 

A lot of people experiencing burnout don’t actually realise that’s what’s going on: you might think you’re just tired, coming down with something, or dissatisfied with your job. Understanding the signs of burnout then can help you to stay on top of your mental health, and keep hold of the motivation and drive that got you into finance in the first place.

The most common signs of burnout include: 

  • Fatigue and exhaustion
  • Trouble sleeping 
  • Reduced performance at work 
  • Mood swings 
  • Lack of creativity
  • Frustration and feelings of cynicism 
  • Difficulty concentrating 
  • Constant headaches and stomach aches
  • Changes in appetite

How to Keep Burnout at Bay: Seven Tips for Managing Stress at Work

To stop stress from escalating to the realms of burnout, it’s really important to put some boundaries into place, access any available support, and prioritise your mental, physical and emotional wellbeing.

  1. Put your hand up: When you work in an industry as high-pressure as banking and financial services, it can feel extremely uncomfortable to admit that you need time out, time off, or an ease in your workload. But confiding in your line manager gives them a chance to support you; after all, it’s in your employer’s best interests to help you stay well.
  1. Find out what support is available: Most workplaces will have some sort of employee wellbeing programme in place, even if it’s not BetterSpace (alas). Whether it’s access to counselling (you don’t have to have a mental health condition to make use of counselling), wellbeing resources to keep you feeling your best, or a content library with literature on looking after yourself, make the most of everything on offer. 
  1. Set your boundaries: When you work in a demanding industry, it’s crucial that you put your own boundaries into place – because no one’s going to do it for you. We’d advise giving yourself a ‘work curfew’, deciding where to draw the line when it comes to taking on new projects, and using your full holiday entitlement throughout the year. 
  1. Prioritise yourself after hours: Once your working day is done, invest in yourself with some essential self-care. Self-care looks different to everybody; you might find your solace in a sports team, respite in a good book, relaxation in a skincare routine; downtime in art; rejuvenation in cooking, or a burst of energy in exercise.
  1. Take regular breaks: As well as looking after yourself out of work, it’s important to listen to what your body is telling you when you’re working. If you’re struggling to concentrate or feeling fatigued, you need a break. Not a coffee at your desk. An actual break; even if that’s just ten minutes outside for some fresh air – and a fresh perspective. 
  1. Unplug for an hour a day: If your mind is always on and you spend much of your day in front of a screen, try to set aside one hour a night, or even one night a week, where you switch off from your phone, laptop, tablet and TV. Whether you meditate, read, workout, or simply chill out, going offline will give you chance to recharge. 
  2. Find your balance: Use a weekly planner to write down all the time you spend working, on your own, with friends and family, and investing in self-care. Colour-code it. Tot it up. Make a graph. It doesn’t matter. What matters is seeing where you’re devoting your time, and deciding whether the balance of your energy is off.

Getting Help with Burnout

We understand how difficult it can be to voice how overwhelmed, overworked, or overlooked you’re feeling in a job that demands a lot of you.

If you’re struggling to talk to your line manager or HR about needing more support, you can always direct them to our site and suggest they look into the BetterSpace platform. BetterSpace helps employers to prioritise workplace mental health, with a science-backed solution that gives employees total choice over the wellbeing resources they need the most.


BetterSpace is the employee wellbeing platform putting control where it belongs: in the hands of the individual employee. Our groundbreaking solution has been developed with medical and domain expertise and is aligned to our Six Pillars of Wellbeing. BetterSpace empowers your workforce to understand and fulfill their mental health needs. 

This approach has achieved engagement rates of 94%, compared to the average usage rate of 2-18% for Employee Assistance Programmes and 10-40% for points solutions.

Want to know more? Schedule a product demonstration with us today.

Workplace wellbeing insights