HELP! I’m burned out.
Have you ever awakened from a not so restful sleep and dreaded getting up for work? Have you ever sat outside of work (or in pandemic times) sat in front of your computer and had absolutely no motivation to work? Have you ever felt like there was too much to do and not enough time in the day? I have.
A few years ago before the term “burnout” became popular, I found myself sitting in the parking lot of my job trying to talk myself into going into the building. This had become a common occurrence for me in a two month period. As much as I loved the work I was doing and even some of the people I worked with, I had no motivation, became increasingly cynical, and started feeling a little defeated.
I was pretty much the definition of burnout and had no idea.
I tried to shake it off a few times and even thought that looking for a new job would be the solution to all my problems. But in reality, it’s hard to shake something when you don’t know the root of it or where the negative feelings originate from. My independence and tendency to take on a ton of responsibility contributed to my stress. It wasn’t until I finally sought out some professional help that I gained awareness about this and knew it was time to take a break.
Taking Action Against Burnout
I began to speak to a therapist who gave me 5 simple tips. Keep scrolling to learn more.
- Acknowledge it/Name it
- Turn to your support system
- Create a plan to combat it
- Set boundaries
- Rinse and Repeat
1. Acknowledge it/Name it:
I literally had to tell myself, “I’m feeling burned out and stressed but don’t know what to do about it”. Just admitting to myself that there was an issue that I had no idea how to solve opened me up to accepting help. Talking about it also helped me realize that I wasn’t alone in feeling like I needed a break! A recent study in 2020 revealed that 76% of American workers suffered from burnout. Taking some time to reflect on this made me confident that it was time to make some changes in my life.
2. Turn to your support system:
Feeling unsure of your feelings or trying to find ways to sort through your causes of burnout are normal. It can be helpful to talk to family and friends to enforce a feeling of support and validate that this is normal. They may not always have the answers, but brainstorming with them could prove helpful. In my own experience, I’ve learned that the ones closest to us can sometimes help with giving an outside perspective that we can’t see ourselves. You may even find solace in knowing that they have faced similar challenges and overcome it.
3. Create a plan to combat it:
My next step was to change my routine. I started working out for 30 minutes in the morning, drinking more water, and finding one activity a week that was just for me and my own personal happiness. Sometimes it was a hike, a mani/pedi, or just a haircut. You have to find the things that make you happy and do more of it.
4. Set boundaries:
Whether work related or otherwise, it’s important to acknowledge your own limits. That means before you take on more ask yourself: Do I have the time, energy, or space to take on more? If the answer is no, this is a good place to insert a boundary. Saying no, or not right now is not selfish. In fact, it’s a great way to show compassion to yourself. As cliche as it may sound, make sure your oxygen mask is on and the O2 is flowing before taking on more.
5. Rinse and Repeat:
Once you start to recognize your own symptoms of burnout it becomes easier to take actionable steps to get to a better place.
If this resonates with you and you want to discuss solutions to overcoming your burnout, we are here to help. Contact us for a free consultation today.