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We live in a fast-paced world that’s ever-tuned into technology and always on the ball. But our energy is finite, and if you stretch yourself beyond your means for too long, eventually that energy will run out. What follows is a feeling of emptiness, exhaustion, and a lack of motivation—also known as burnout.
Coming back from this state is a process that takes time. It’s about restoration, recuperation and reassessing your responsibilities. You might have to make some changes, and changing isn’t always easy. That said, recovering from burnout can be a good time to incorporate new healthy habits into your routine. You might not feel great at this moment. But lying in this situation is a chance to overcome burnout with a fresh lens, healthy boundaries and a little more self-care. Below we've put together some tips to support you.
When it comes to emotions like stress, overwhelm, and exhaustion, there can be a natural urge to resist them; ploughing on with another cup of coffee, pushing yourself to meet deadlines and attending social events when you don’t feel up to it. There’s only so long that you can keep this up before your fuel tank eventually runs out.
The first step to making it past this frazzled and frantic way of living is acceptance. In recognising where you are right now, you can start to make the changes that will get you where you need to be.
Commitments like your job, parenting responsibilities or preparing meals each day are all things that are harder to manoeuvre. Of course, there are always options. But generally, there will be some areas of your life where quick fixes are possible. It could be rescheduling with a friend, going to bed an extra hour earlier each night or asking for support at work.
Small wins add up. Burnout arises from your body and mind batteries running on empty. With quick fixes, you can recharge bit by bit. Slowly you’ll start to gain energy, which will boost recovery and allow you to make bigger changes.
In a state of exhaustion, getting into the driver’s seat is difficult. Things in your life can quickly spiral out of control, leaving you unable to cope with demands. It’s a vicious cycle to be in; but it's a cycle you can begin to take when you take power back into your own hands.
How this looks will be unique to everyone and vary greatly on your life situation. Maybe it means saying no to favours that would tighten your schedule, asking for help from a friend or prioritising what’s most important. Try writing a list of ways that you can take back control.
The most important part of burnout recovery? It has to be rest. If you're suffering from burnout, you’ve likely been in a state of stress for a long time. Maybe you've been swamped with plans, projects, obligations and responsibilities. Allow yourself some time to recuperate your energy and prioritise rest.
Try to incorporate as much rest as possible into your routine, with a hot bath, a massage or an hour of reading in the evening. And don’t feel guilty about this. You’re only human, and you can only do so much with the resources you have. Everybody has been here at some point.
If you’re feeling burnt out, the most important thing you can do is focus on restoring your body and energy back to full health. Think about how you’d look after someone else if they were poorly. You’d probably respond in a kind, caring way, supporting them back to where they need to be. Often, it’s easier to do this with others but more difficult to show that compassion for yourself.
Self-care is a vital aspect of a healthy life, and the more you can take care of yourself right now—the better.
Health Assured can help you support employees recovering from burnout
Our counsellors can offer your people a compassionate ear whenever they need it most. Get in touch with one of our wellbeing experts today to find out more.
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