Burnout is rampant. It’s a place we can all get to when we’ve done too much for too long at our own expense. Even people who love what they do can feel burnout if they fail to prioritize their health and happiness.
When you’ve worked outrageous hours by design or by default, when you haven’t taken a vacation in years, or when you’ve cancelled activities that support your well-being and relationships you are a candidate for burnout.
Here are a few things you can do to get you moving in the right direction.
Step 1: Start where you are. Acknowledge burnout. High achievers often don’t see burnout coming. If you’re feeling fussy, short-tempered, easily irritated, overwhelmed, or unusually negative, these are internal signals that it’s time to step back and reflect. How are you spending your time? Are you taking care of yourself? What restorative activities have you done lately?
Step 2: Listen to the quality of your self-talk. When an obstacle comes your way do you tend to approach it negatively, viewing it as yet another problem piled on top of other responsibilities? Whatever you think or make up about your challenges will dictate what comes next, so take a moment to pause, breathe and avoid assigning negative meaning to them. Everything is not an emergency, and it’s important to learn to assess difficult situations using facts vs. emotions. Treat your challenges as learning opportunities to delegate, problem solve and engage others for assistance.
Step 3: Value your time for self care. Protect your time for self care knowing that it supports your overall well-being. For example, when you do 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise you get a flow of good chemicals that allows you to perform at a high level in other areas of your life. So beware! Once you start allowing other activities to take the place of self care you’re on a slippery slope headed towards burnout.
I've coached numerous clients in progressing from burnout to balance, and I believe that the most effective solution for dealing with burnout is personalized coaching. Discover the positive impact coaching makes and do something different for a change!
Dawn Nelson, MSW, CHT, CPC
Professional Coaching Services