The ‘Quiet Quitting’ Trend is Taking Over — What Does This Mean for the Future of Work?

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Laura Berlinsky-Schine2.3k
April 14, 2024 at 6:5PM UTC

Long hours in the office, working through lunch, checking in on weekends and signing on early — that’s all part of the past. There’s a new work methodology in town, and it’s replacing the whole “going above and beyond without recognition” style: quiet quitting.

On TikTok, users are popularizing the term. “You’re not outright quitting your job, but you’re quitting the idea of going above and beyond,”  says TikToker Zaiad Khan. “You are still performing your duties, but you are no longer subscribing to the hustle culture mentally that work has to be our life.”

Many people say burnout is playing a role in the quiet quitting phenomenon, and it’s one way employees are taking back the reigns and establishing boundaries. Others blame a dearth of growth and promotional opportunities. Either way, it’s garnered a lot of attention — not all positive.

“I'm guilty of ‘quiet quitting’ and have no motivation,” an FGBer recently wrote in our forums. “I recently took a week off, but it wasn't enough. I was hoping to come back refreshed, but I'm still feeling super burnt out for a ton of reasons (management, poor culture, unclear growth trajectory, an incredibly busy summer). Any advice? Is it simply time for a change?”

Here’s what other community members had to say.

“An insult to people have been going above and beyond.”

“I have never liked the term ‘quiet quitting,’” one community member commented. “I think it is a misnomer and an insult to people who have been going above and beyond without appropriate, meaningful rewards for far too long. The problem isn't only toxic organizations. Workers also have to say, ‘enough is enough. I am being paid to do X, and that is what I will do.’” 

“Take care of yourself.”

“I would look at your symptoms of burnout as a sign to take better care of yourself, whether or not you change jobs,” another FGBer wrote. “I am somewhat wired to be a workaholic, and used the following strategies to reduce these tendencies: 

1. Enrich your personal life and enjoy it to the maximum. Use all of your vacation and comp time.

2. Schedule your personal appointments first and keep them religiously. If you’re a workaholic, you’ll get your work done. What you need is to make your personal life a priority.

3. Establish boundaries. Make sure your own work and well-being are taken care of before pitching in to help others.

4. Occasional overtime is fine, but don’t be the employee who is always working overtime, especially if most of your colleagues are not.”

“Give yourself a pat on the back.”

“I sooo understand,” agreed Kristie White. “Sometimes, the burnout is because you need a change — you aren't challenged anymore, your work/life balance is out of whack or you are in a position you really don't like. Plus, we have to remind ourselves that part of our burnout is due to the gazillion of stressors we have all experienced over the past two years. For next steps, I would do some soul searching. Second, consider the work you do that gives you the most pleasure — is there a different kind of position where you can amplify that? Next, think of your long-term personal and professional goals — what do you want?”

Quiet quitters take note! Maybe your impulse is more than just a work slump — it could be a wake-up call.

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This article reflects the views of the author and not necessarily those of Fairygodboss.

Laura Berlinsky-Schine is a freelance editor and writer based in Brooklyn with her demigod/lab-mix Hercules. She primarily focuses on education, technology and career development. She has worked with Penguin Random House, Fairygodboss, CollegeVine, BairesDev and many other publications and organizations. Her humor writing has appeared in the Weekly Humorist, Slackjaw, Little Old Lady Comedy, Flexx Magazine, Points in Case, Jane Austen's Wastebasket, and Greener Pastures. She also writes fiction and essays, which have appeared in publications including The Memoirist and The Avalon Literary Review. View her work and get in touch at: www.lauraberlinskyschine.com.

What’s your no. 1 piece of advice for approaching 'quiet quitting'? Share your answer in the comments to help other Fairygodboss members!

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