What is burnout? It’s when we feel totally overwhelmed—in our job or in our personal life. That sense of overwhelm can cause us to stop enjoying our work, or not wanting to be around friends or family members. It often happens when we have committed to too many things or too many people; whether personally or work-wise.
How do you know if you’ve got burnout? Many people report very poor sleep; constant feelings of anxiety; poor breathing; difficulty concentrating; feeling irritable; lack of accomplishment or joy in doing things that you previously enjoyed.
The first step to managing burnout is noticing these symptoms. The second step is allowing yourself permission to be kinder to yourself. You don’t have to live like this. In fact, you’ll feel a lot healthier when you make some life changes.
We’re not talking about big life changes here. In fact, all the latest research tells us that small, doable, realistic, achievable steps are going to help us the most.
If you’re not sleeping well, a small step can simply be shutting off any technology, including social media one hour before bed. Instead, you might do some gentle yoga stretches or slow breathing. You might slowly sip a cup of chamomile tea. During the day, another small step might be to put a reminder on your phone to stand up and stretch every hour. The key is finding small, doable things that you enjoy that will be easy for you to add into your day. They might include:
• Going for a short walk at lunchtime
• Instead of eating lunch at your computer, going outside and eating it in the sunshine
• Calling a friend and meeting up after work
• Doing five minutes of slow breathing
• Doing five minutes of yoga/pilates/Tai Chi
• Listening to a short inspiring podcast like Journeys to Wellness
• Giving yourself permission to put your own mental health first and say “No” to people.