Have you been feeling helpless , rudderless, disillusioned and completely exhausted lately?
You may be on the brink of burn out.
What is a burn out?
Burnout is a state of emotional, mental and/or physical exhaustion caused by excessive levels of prolonged stress.
Being burned out may leave you feeling overwhelmed, emotionally drained and hopeless. It can make you lose big picture perspective and you may start finding even minor problems and challenges insurmountable.
The side effects of burn out can spillover and hamper all areas of your life from work productivity to relationships.
Causes of Burnout:
Burnout can be work related, lifestyle related or personality traits related.
Burn out can start from a high performance drive, unquenchable quest for perfection and a compulsive need to prove oneself.
It leads one to start working too hard, clocking overtime to an extent that they start neglecting their basic needs of proper food and sleep.
Overtime it can lead to sleep disorders, psychosomatic problems ,loss of productivity and even depression and/or anxiety.
If you don’t have a balanced and holistic lifestyle where you take out time to tend to your emotional, mental, physical and spiritual wellbeing, you will be more prone to stress related burnout.
Also if you lack love and support from your close relationships and don’t have enough people to turn to for help, it can cause additional strain on your mental and emotional well being.
Personality or behavior traits that make you more susceptible to burnout:
If you have a high achieving, Type A personality with perfectionist tendencies with trouble delegating work to others, you will be at a risk of taking more on your plate than you can handle and all these tendencies will eventually lead to prolonged excessive stress and burn out.
Burnout Prevention and Treatment Strategies
Whether you find yourself on the brink of burn out or want to avoid burn out, here is a list of action strategies that will help you to slowdown your stress and prevent burn out:
1). Work on increasing your resilience and self efficacy
Resilience is the ability to recover quickly from difficult and stressful situations.
Self efficacy is having the confidence in your ability to cope with overcoming stressful situations and reaching your goals.
The best way to increase resilience and self efficacy is experiential.
The more we stretch out of our comfort zones and achieve our goals, the more our brains get wired to believe that we can overcome any difficulty or obstacle.
Another way to build resilience and self efficacy is through finding an effective “role model” or “mentor”.
We can learn a lot by simply observing how our role models remain calm and poised even under extremely stressful situations and achieve their goals surpassing all difficulties.
2). Remodel the way you look at work
You could be in a high pressure chaotic work environment or doing a job that is monotonous and robotic.
The most effective way to evade job burnout is to find and do work that is deeply meaningful to you but if switching careers is not feasible, you still have the option of changing your mindset by remodeling the way you look at work.
Try to look at the bigger picture and find meaning and value in your work.
Look at how your work would ultimately make a difference in someone’s life through the product or service that you would provide.
Also look at the opportunities that your job provides in terms of socializing and learning.
Reframing your attitude towards work can help you to regain a sense of control and purpose over your life and reduce the chances of burnout and stress.
3). Nurture your creative side
Finding a creative outlet is a great way to distress. Whether it is arts, poetry, dancing or any other creative outlet, it has a way of bringing the person’s attention completely into present moment where he can forget the worries and access the dimension of universal intelligence that gives him strength and wisdom to solve his problems.
“We cannot solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them.” —Albert Einstein.
4). Focus on holistic well being
The most effective prevention strategy for avoiding burnout is leading a balanced life by focusing on holistic well being.
Take care of your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual well being Maintain healthy diet and exercise regimen.
Set aside time for relaxation. Go for yoga, meditation or spiritual retreats and detox from your gadgets every once in a while.
5). Get support
Man is a social creature. As much as we would like to think of ourselves as independent entities but our nervous systems aren’t self contained but pick up and affect the energies in our vicinity.
What that means is we can pick up the emotional states of people around us and also affect their emotional states through what is known as limbic resonance.
We have the ability to remodel the emotional parts of our loved ones by a process called Limbic revision.
When we show love and empathy to our loved ones, their limbic system learns to mimic that behavior and they learn to adopt the same behavior of love and empathy towards themselves and others.
Therefore it is extremely crucial at the time of burnout to not isolate ourselves, even if it can be very tempting.
It is all the more important to surround ourselves with people who offer love and support during stressful times because their behavior teaches our limbic system to adopt healthy and loving behavior.
We have a unique ability to remodel the brains of people we love though limbic resonance. By showing love and empathy, we heal and rewire the brains of our partners
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