Understanding Burnout & 6 Effective Ways to Deal with it

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Understanding Burnout & 6 Effective Ways to Deal With It

Unless you've mastered the art of balance, you've probably experienced burnout. In today's society, it seems like burnout is almost encouraged. Because of this, many people often feel it, even if they don't know what it is. Keep reading if you're curious to learn more about what burnout is and how to cope with and avoid it!

What Causes Burnout?

WebMD informs readers that burnout "is a form of exhaustion caused by constantly feeling swamped" and "it's a result of excessive and prolonged emotional, physical, and mental stress." Some common things that cause burnout include:
  • An absence of social ties
  • Too much to do at work
  • Too much to do at school
  • Friend and familial stress
  • Lack of self-care and mental health

Some signs and symptoms of burnout are feeling drained, having negative feelings toward the cause of your burnout, and an inability to do your work/school work, or take care of yourself or your friendships. 

So, if this sounds like you, then you might be wondering how to cope with burnout.

How to Deal with Burnout

If you've been feeling burnout, you can always take a vacation. However, those who simply take a break and return to the environment that caused it in the first place are likely to feel burnout after only three short weeks of returning, according to QZ. Therefore, the best way to cope with burnout is to tackle the problem head-on with these actions:

1. Figure out what's causing your burnout
Many things can cause burnout and it can be from a variety of sources. You might have a full-time job (that you don't really like) and you're putting yourself through school. You might be a stay-at-home parent who doesn't get much "me-time." Whatever it is that's making you feel overworked and overscheduled is likely what's causing your burnout!

2. Find people to talk to
Talking to people about how you're feeling can help you figure out your next steps. Whether you seek therapy or confide in a family member or a close friend, finding the people who are there to support can help take the tension off your shoulders. Trying to manage burnout all on your own is going to make it that much harder to work through it.

3. Figure out changes that you can make today
Step number one is to accept that you alone can't do it all. If you're taking on too many projects at work or you're trying to manage all of your partner's emotional trauma, you're going to feel drained and exhausted. Talk to your boss about which project is most important and needs to be done right away and which projects can be put on the back burner or passed to someone else. Encourage your partner to see a therapist and remind them that you're still here to love and support them. 

Challenge: try to identify 3 things that you can change today (even if it's just something small)!

4. Look at all of your options
Sometimes you're not able to change anything about what's causing your burnout. Maybe your boss doesn't care that you need help. Maybe your partner isn't willing to see a therapist. Maybe your friends aren't here to support you. In that case, it's time to move on. Find a new job. Make new friends. Tell your partner it's time to take a break. 

Do whatever you need to do to get yourself out of a toxic situation that you can't fix!

5. Take back your control
Instead of blaming outside circumstances for how you feel, take back control and find ways that you can successfully change your situation. Some ways that you can do include:
  • Prioritizing the things that need to be done and setting aside the things that aren't as important
  • Delegating tasks that don't need to be done by you personally
  • Find a work-life balance that feels right for you
  • Set your boundaries with the people in your life involved

6. Pay attention to your needs and mental wellness
One reason that we start feeling burnt out is that we aren't taking care of ourselves. By carving out time each day to take care of yourself, you can cope with burnout that you're feeling right now and avoid it in the future! Some things that you can do include:
  • Getting enough sleep
  • Eat healthy meals, take your vitamins, and drink enough water
  • Do 30 minutes of daily exercise
  • Go to your therapist appointment, the doctor, and other necessary appointments
  • Try meditation to help you practice mindfulness
  • Spend time with people that you love

Sometimes it can be hard to set boundaries, find your community, and structure your life in a way that won't cause burnout. 

Want to learn more? Check out all of the courses offered by Aspyn Wellness. 

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