Life can be demanding. When demands exceed your abilities and lead to chronic stress, it becomes the perfect storm for burnout to occur.
Burnout is caused by work-related stress, according to the WHO, but it can also extend into a number of other aspects of your life ranging from parenting to schooling to your personal life.
Regardless of what caused your burnout, it can have a real impact on your life and livelihood when it strikes. Burnout recovery may feel like an uphill battle. Regaining your momentum and mojo is a feat in its own right. But it is possible.
Below is a closer look at helpful tips to help you recover from burnout and tips to help improve your well-being so you can start feeling like yourself again.
Ways to recover from burnout
If you are overworked or have a toxic work environment, and one bad day turns into many, your mind and body can only handle so much. If you weren’t taking care of your mental health before, you may have ignored the warning signs of burnout.
Burnout is a consequence that many people do not consider until it is already too late. Symptoms of burnout include reduced self-efficacy, decreased motivation, dissociation, and a lack of interest in your workday.
When burnout strikes it can feel like you're backed into a corner with nowhere else to go. While it can sometimes feel like there is no escape, there is — and below are a few tricks that you may find helpful if you currently experience burnout.
Retrace your steps
The circumstances leading up to burnout don’t happen overnight. Getting overworked or feeling drained occurs over time. One helpful way of getting out of burnout is to retrace the steps that led you to where you are. What was happening before you experienced burnout?
This closer examination can provide you with some valuable insight into the cause of your burnout in the first place. Retracing how you got to a point of burnout can help you to identify and change the things that may have been contributing to burnout.
Perhaps a recent change in your workflow at work has drastically decreased your productivity causing you to bring more work home with you at the end of the day. Maybe you are working long hours or feel emotional exhaustion from dealing with demands of family members.
Whatever the reason, identifying the culprit can provide you with some hope and something to work on.
Take time off
Burnout is something that can be incredibly difficult to work through. Sometimes the best option is to take time off and give yourself a little self-compassion, rather than fight against it.
Taking a break from your responsibilities can help to alleviate stress and can give you time to reflect and rejuvenate. For some, a quick vacation is all it takes, while others may need a little extra downtime to themselves.
Take care of your health
When it comes to being overworked, many people take less than ideal care of their own health. Working late, choosing fast food, not getting enough sleep, and not finding the time to get in some physical activity are just some of the ways that burnout can impact the way in which you treat your health.
Your body and health play a large role in your ability to think, problem-solve, and manage the difficulties of life. Eating a healthy and well-balanced meal can help to ensure your mind and body are properly nourished to tackle demanding tasks.
Supporting yourself through a healthy lifestyle with regular exercise may be just what you need to improve your resilience, help support your immune system function, and get out of a burnout funk.
Additionally, getting routine physical exercise can provide you with some much-needed endorphins, lower cortisol, and could help get you out of a burnout rut.
Seek professional help
While burnout can be overcome on your own, seeking professional healthcare can prove immensely helpful. A professional, like a therapist, is an invaluable tool. A therapist can help you to navigate the complexities of burnout and help lower your risk of burnout in the future.
A therapist can help you work through the feelings of burnout, provide you with techniques and coping strategies, as well as help you identify the source behind your burnout. Essentially a therapist gives you a safe place to check in and can take some of the guesswork out of getting past burnout on your own. You might even get on the road to recovery a little quicker.
Understand your stress triggers
At the end of the day, burnout is caused by stress. Understanding when you get stressed, and learning better stress management coping skills for your common stressors can be immensely helpful in getting past burnout.
Simply taking note of the things that increase your stress levels throughout the day is an excellent start. Pay attention to what causes you tension. If you find yourself clenching your jaw or fists, or notice other physical symptoms of stress, those situations may be a good starting place.
Doing this for a week you may notice some recurring trends that may be insightful and help you to make your work more manageable in terms of stress.
Create stricter work life balance
One of the more common causes of burnout has to do with overworking. When it comes to many jobs today, it is all too easy to allow work to interfere with your personal life. Checking and responding to work emails on your days off, being asked to finish projects at home, and even working from home make it incredibly difficult to maintain a good work-life balance.
One of the best ways to solve this is to create explicit expectations with your employer regarding working and non-working hours. Set boundaries.
Days that you officially take off should not be on-call days. Setting this expectation is important in helping reduce the chance of burnout and reassociate positive emotions with your workplace. Also staying true to your word and sticking to only working during your scheduled working hours can be immensely helpful in fixing a work-life imbalance.
How to start feeling like yourself again
Coming out of something like burnout is not always easy, especially if you have been experiencing it for some time. Finally getting out from under the storm cloud of burnout can be liberating, but also full of uncertainty, as you may not remember who you were before you were left feeling overworked and exhausted.
Below is a closer look at some tips you can utilize to help you start feeling more like yourself.
Routines are something that may not seem all that important but they can be a great way to have a better understanding of yourself and what you need out of your day. Routines are incredibly adaptable and customizable so you can create them in a way that best suits you and your needs.
Taking the time to think about how you like to wake up, get ready, and all the processes in between can help you to feel a little more in tune with yourself and may be able to help you feel a little more like yourself following a burnout slump.
Remember to enjoy the small things
Having burnout can cast a grey and glum facade over things you used to find enjoyable. Reigniting enjoyment for the little things in your life can help to get you to feel a little like yourself again.
Taking the time to mindfully enjoy your morning cup of joe, appreciating the loved ones that support you, or even reminding yourself of the aspects of your job that you like can be an immense help in feeling like your old self.
Support natural energy
One of the first things to occur with burnout is fatigue. Fatigue as a result of burnout can last a long time. If you find yourself hitting the pillow the second you get home, you may be experiencing burnout.
When you have otherwise recovered from burnout, getting back to your normal energy level may be difficult. Some people may opt for caffeine to provide a small boost of energy, but ultimately, supporting your body’s natural energy may be time better spent.
One of the ways that you can support more natural energy levels is through MitoQ.
MitoQ is a supplement specifically designed to help support the optimal functioning of the cellular powerhouses within your body known as the mitochondria.
In some cases, a lack of energy can be contributed to mitochondria with an oxidative imbalance which can lead to a decline in efficiency. Taking two MitoQ capsules each morning over the course of a few months may help to reestablish antioxidant levels in the mitochondria and help support more normal energy levels.
Burnout can hold you back from achieving your fullest potential. If left for too long, it can be easy to forget the things that are meaningful to you, making it easy to lose yourself. Taking the time to do some self-reflection, self-care, spending time on your physical health, and seeking professional help are great ways to help facilitate recovery.
In the wake of burnout, it may still be difficult to feel like your old self again. Create routines, enjoy the little things, and support your natural energy level. It may be just what you need to finally get you past your burnout slump — and onto bigger and better things.
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