You’re Burned Out. We’re Burned Out Too. Let’s Learn How to Fix It.

You’re Burned Out. We’re Burned Out Too. Let’s Learn How to Fix It.

Everyone – everyone – is feeling burned out these days. If you’ve been feeling trapped, defeated, or are experiencing a loss of motivation or less satisfaction in your work – you’re not alone. Seriously, millions of hard-working people throughout our country are feeling it too. Bosses and employees alike. Everyone is going through it, and it’s up to us to pull ourselves out. According to what the experts are saying, the only way we’re ever going to fix an issue this widespread is to learn to take a little better care of ourselves.

There are several consistantly recommended strategies that can help us all get our heads back in the game. The goal here is to relieve some pressure, alleviate the grind, and get us back to being productive without becoming overtaxed.


Resting in More Ways than One.

When you think of rest, images of lounge chairs or sleeping may come to mind. But the concept of resting is a bit bigger than that when it comes to battling burnout. Author Saundra Dalton-Smith, M.D., writes that as many as seven different types of resting are needed – physical, mental, social, spiritual, sensory, emotional, and creative.

Physical resting is what you might have expected, like sleeping, napping, or getting a massage. Mental rest is fairly straightforward too, like meditation or creating a shutdown ritual at the end of each workday. But the other five types of rest might be a first for some people:

  • Social resting is about spending more time with people that give you energy, and less time with those who don’t.
  • Spiritual resting is to have a purpose-driven activity like volunteering or faith-based activities.
  • Sensory resting is about unplugging.
  • Emotional resting is when you spend more time with people you can be yourself around.
  • And finally, creative resting is about appreciating things like nature, a good book, or some other creatively stimulating endeavor you enjoy.

There sure are a lot more types of resting than most people realize. Humans need a healthy dose of each of these fairly regularly to remain energized and engaged.


Spot the Signs. Ask for Help.

Just like any other health condition, burnout has actual symptoms that can be tracked, measured, and addressed. These symptoms should not be ignored. Recognizing your limits and not pushing yourself too far is crucial, as burnout can happen not only in work but in every aspect of life, from social interactions to daily tasks. It’s important to recognize the signs of burnout, such as procrastination, loss of appetite, constant tiredness, feeling overwhelmed, and self-doubt. If you reach this point, it’s crucial not to ignore these symptoms and to act quickly to prevent an even more painful, stressful, and anxiety-inducing period.

Learning to ask for help is one of the healthiest approaches to combat burnout a person can take, yet it’s something we as Americans aren’t very comfortable requesting. Most folks would rather maintain a veneer of competency, toughness, and self-reliance. But that’s exactly the problem here, isn’t it?

Asking for help is not a sign of weakness in the workplace. Instead, it’s a pragmatic way to ensure that you’re able to complete your work without sacrificing your health. Think of the long-term here. Ask for help instead of running yourself down.

Some simple ways to ask for help with work tasks include delegating tasks to colleagues, seeking input from mentors or managers, and collaborating with team members on projects. By asking for help when you need it, you can maintain your productivity, reduce stress levels, and ensure that your work meets the highest standards.


Daily Present.

As a final recommendation, one of the greatest bits of wisdom to curb the ill effects of burnout comes from the hit 90s TV show “Twin Peaks.” In the show, beloved main character Special Agent Dale Cooper says:

“Every day, once a day, give yourself a present. Don’t plan it. Don’t wait for it. Just let it happen. It could be a new shirt at the men’s store, a catnap in your office chair, or two cups of good, hot, black coffee.”

That philosophy runs deep indeed and will definitely help alleviate some of the pressures of the daily grind. After all, people don’t live to work. They work to support their lives. Treating yourself to something little every day is an excellent way to remind yourself of what’s important – you and your health. Little presents to yourself each day will help you never lose sight of that.


Take Care of Yourself.

The grind and the endless hustle are weighing heavily on everyone these days. You are totally not alone in feeling like your brain is a burnt piece of toast. In fact, most folks are feeling exactly the same way. We’ve all been working hard, and it’s taken a toll on our bodies and minds – which are really our most valuable assets. Let’s all start taking better care of ourselves by following some of these expert recommendations. We deserve to feel better and perform at our best. All it takes is a little attention where we need it most – on ourselves, for a change.

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